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C^e Colonial ^oriet? of 0pai30atyujsett?s 



Committee of publication. 






AWElnoni Co.Bootor 

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Cf)e Colonial ^octetp of Massachusetts 

Volume III. 



9 73 -lot 




SRnfocrsitg lircss: 
John Wilson and Son, Cambridge, U.S.A. 


THIS volume contains a record of the Transactions of the 
Society at its Stated Meetings from January, 1895, to 
April, 1897, and of the Council at two Special Meetings. 
Although it is a continuation of a similar record in Vol- 
ume I., it has been designated as Volume III. of the 
Society's Publications, because Volume II. was reserved for 
the Commissions and Instructions of the Koyal Governors 
of the Province of the Massachusetts Bay. The completion 
of that volume has been delayed by various causes, chief 
among which is the generous offer of our associate Mr. Abner 
Cheney Goodell to add to his original gift to the Society 
copies of the Commissions of Vice-Admiral issued to the 
several Royal Governors of New England, — a series of 
important documents but little known even to historians. 
These papers have been received from England and are 
now in form for the press, and it is confidently expected 
that the volume which is to contain them will be ready for 
distribution in the near future. 

The volume now offered to the Society records an extraor- 
dinary mortality among our Fellowship. As will be seen, 
tributes have been paid to our first President, Dr. Gould, and 
to our first-elected Vice-Presidents, Judge Lowell and the 
Hon. Leverett Saltonstall, beside General Walker, Gov- 
ernor Russell, Judge Austin, the Hon, Martin Brimmer, 
Dr. Daniel Denison Slade, Mr. William Gordon Weld, 


Mr. George 0. Shattuck, the Hon. Darwin E. Ware, the 
Hon. John F. Andrew, and Dr. Edward Wigglesworth. 

Memoirs of five of our associates are also included in this 
Record, — of Benjamin Aptiiorp Gould, by S. Lothrop 
Thorndike; of the Hon. Martin Brimmer, by George S. 
Hale ; of the Hon. John F. Andrew, by Edmund March 
Wheelwright ; of Mr. William Gordon Weld, by Joseph 
Henry Allen ; and of Dr. Edward Wigglesworth, by 
Henry P. Quincy. 

Many valuable papers and communications find a place in 
this volume. Among these may be mentioned Mr. Andrew 
McFarland Davis's discussion of the Land Bank and our 
Provincial Currency, and his elaborate paper on the suit of 
Frost v. Leighton ; Professor Goodale's paper on the Early 
New England Plants ; a Letter of President Dunster contain- 
ing new and important facts concerning Harvard College and 
its first Building, communicated by Mr. Henry H. Edes ; 
Mr. Edes's correspondence with Dr. Bourinot concerning 
Pierre Boucher de la Broquerie ; Mr. Henry D. Sedgwick's 
paper on Robert Sedgwick ; Mr. Robert N. Toppan's paper 
on The Failure to Establish an Hereditary Political Aristoc- 
racy in the Colonies ; Mr. Albert Matthews's discussion of 
the use at American Colleges of the word "Campus"; and 
Mr. Appleton P. C. Griffin's paper on a hitherto unknown 
daughter of Dr. Franklin. 

Interest will also be felt in the movement to increase the 
Permanent Funds of the Society, the initiation of which is 
recorded in the following pages. 

Through the generosity of our associate Mr. Frederick 
Lewis Gay, the Committee of Publication is able to insert a 
fine photogravure of Admiral Knowles to accompany Mr. 
Noble's paper on the Libel Suit of Knowles v. Douglass. 
The plate has been engraved expressly for the Society from 
a rare mezzotint belonging to Mr. Gay, and at his expense. 


The Committee would express its gratitude to Mr. Gay for 
this acceptable gift ; to President Wheelwright for the 
portrait of Martin Gay and the Plans of his estate in Union 
Street, Boston; to Mr. Samuel T. Snow for the use of the 
etched plate of a view of the Office of the Revere Copper 
Company in 1840 ; and to the families of those deceased 
members whose Memoirs appear in this volume for the por- 
traits which accompany them. 

The Index has been made by Miss Elizabeth H. Con- 
nolly, whose qualifications for the work are amply attested 
by the result of her labors, — more especially in the digest 
which has been made of the several Papers and Memoirs. 
The Committee has enhanced the value of her work by a 
fuller specification of persons and places. 

For the Committee, 

John Noble. 

Boston, 27 December, 1899. 



Preface v 

List op Illustrations xix 

Officers Elected 21 November, 1899 xxi 

Resident Members xxii 

Honorary Members xxiii 

Corresponding Members xxiii 

Members Deceased xxiv 


Member Elected 1 

Announcement by Francis Henry Lincoln, of the Organization of 
The Clinton Historical Society ; and of the Incorporation of 
The Nantucket Historical Association, Groton Historical 
Society, Daughters of the Revolution, Commonwealth of 
Massachusetts, The Hills Family Genealogical and Historical 
Association, and Naval Order of the United States, Com- 
mandery of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts ... 1 

Paper by Andrew McFarland Davis, on Provincial Banks : Land 

and Silver 2 


Letter from Joseph Hodges Choate 41 

Remarks by Joseph Henry Allen, on the Religious Situation in 

the American Colonies before the Revolution 41 

Remarks by William Watson Goodwin, on the provision of the 
Mary Saltonstall Scholarship at Harvard College that it shall 
be given to a Dissenter 46 



Remarks by William Gordon Weld, in communicating two papers 

pertaining to the Land Bank of 1740 46 

Text of the documents 47 

Remarks by Andrew McFarland Davis 49 

Paper by John Noble, on The Trial and Punishment of Crime in 
the Court of Assistants in the time of the Colony, and in 
the Superiour Court of Judicature in the early years of the 
Province 51 

Announcement by Henry Ernest Woods, of the Formation of the 

Quaboag Historical Society 66 

Member Elected 66 


Letter from Charles Henry Davis, respecting Insurance Maps . . 67 
Remarks by Andrew McFarland Davis 68 

Remarks by Henry Herbert Edes, on the Bromley Real Estate 
Maps of Boston, Cambridge, Somerville, Newton, and 
Brookline 70 

Paper by Abner Cheney Goodell, Jr., on Captain John Quelch, 

the Pirate 71 


Death of Leverett Saltonstall announced 78 

Remarks by Philip Howes Sears 78 

Remarks by Edward Griffin Porter . <> 79 

Remarks by George Silsbee Hale 80 

Remarks by Henry Herbert Edes 81 

Remarks by Henry Williams 84 

Resolution 85 

Committee to Examine the Treasurer's Accounts appointed ... 85 

Committee to Nominate Officers appointed 85 

Announcement by Henry Williams, of the Organization of The 

Topsfield Historical Society 85 



Communication by Francis Henry Lincoln, of extracts from the 

Journal of Lieutenant Benjamin Beal 85 

Paper by Frederick Lewis Gay, on the Site of Governor John 

Winthrop's House in Boston 86 

Paper by Andrew McFarland Davis, on Sir Thomas Mowlson . 90 

Communication by Henry Herbert Edes, of a Bibliography of the 
Historical Publications of the New-England States by 
Appleton Prentiss Clark Griffin 94 

Remarks by Edward Griffin Porter, on the events which occurred 
between Lexington Green and Concord Bridge on the night 

of the eighteenth of April, 1775 139 

Remarks by Joseph Henry Allen 139 


Report of the Council 140 

Report of the Treasurer . ■. 147 

Report of the Auditing Committee 149 

Officers Elected 150 

Tribute of Henry Herbert Edes to Judge Austin 150 

Tribute of Archibald Murray Howe to John Forrester Andrew 151 

Annual Dinner 152 


Communication by Andrew McFarland Davis, concerning a 

Negro Duel on Boston Common in 1742 ...... 154 

Paper by Henry Dwight Sedgwick, on Robert Sedgwick . . . 156 

Remarks by Charles Sedgwick Rackemann 173 

Remarks by Henry Herbert Edes, in communicating a Letter of 

the Reverend Samuel Cary 174 

Text of the Letter 177 

Members Elected 179 




Death of Martin Brimmer announced 180 

Paper by George Lincoln Goodale, on New England Plants seen 

by the Earliest Colonists 180 

Communication by Andrew McFarland Davis, of a Certificate 

of Governor Shirley's Protestantism 194 


Remarks by the President, referring to the Death of Martin 

Brimmer, Edward Wigglesworth, and Daniel Denison Slade 196 

Remarks by George Silsbee Hale 198 

Remarks by William Watson Goodwin 198 

Remarks by Abner Cheney Goodell, Jr 200 

Remarks by Henry Ernest Woods 201 

Remarks by Edward Wheelwright 201 

Remarks b}? John Lowell 203 

Remarks by Charles Montraville Green 204 

Paper by Abner Cheney Goodell, Jr., describing the Massachu- 
setts House Journals, 1644-1657 205 

Remarks by John Noble 207 

Remarks by Andrew McFarland Davis, in communicating an 
Anonymous Letter to Governor Shirley threatening to burn 

his House 207 

Text of the Letter 207 

Remarks by Abner Cheney Goodell, Jr., in communicating a 

Proclamation by Governor Hancock in 1783 210 


Paper by John Noble, on The Libel Suit of Knowles v. Douglass, 

1748, 1749 213 

Communication by Henry Herbert Edes of a correspondence 

between Secretary Willard and Commodore Knowles, 1747 239 

Remarks by Henry Herbert Edes, respecting events in the 

history of King's Chapel, Boston 240 

Members Elected 240 




Committee to Nominate Officers appointed 241 

Committee to Examine the Treasurer's Accounts appointed . . 241 

Communication by George Silsbee Hale, of the Petition of 
Martin Brimmer and others for admission to citizenship in 
the Province of the Massachusetts Bay 241 

Remarks by George Lyman Kittredge, respecting old papers 

recently rescued from destruction in Barnstable .... 243 

Gift from Abner Cheney Goodell, Jr., of a copy of the Early 
Acts and Resolves of Massachusetts from 1780 to 1806, 
compiled by Edwin Munroe Bacon 243 

Announcement by Henry Ernest Woods, of the Organization of 
The Harvard Memorial Society, Brookline Historical Publi- 
cation Society, The Old Briclgewater Historical Society, 
Mendon Historical Society, and South Boston Historical 
Society ; and of the Incorporation of The Lawrence Society 
of Natural History and Archaeology 243 

Paper by Andrew McFarland Davis, on the Suit of Frost v. 

Leighton 246 

Communication by Samuel Johnson, of an unpublished Decision 
of the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts affecting 

the Old South Society, in Boston 264 

Text of the Decision 265 

Paper by Appleton Prentiss Clark Griffin, respecting a hitherto 

unknown Daughter of Benjamin Franklin 267 

Letter from John Foxcroft to Dr. Franklin 268 

Members Elected 271 


Remarks by the President, in referring to the death of William 

Gordon Weld and Governor Russell 272 

Report of the Council 273 

Report of the Treasurer 275 

Report of the Auditing Committee 277 



Vote to appoint a Committee to consider the subject of increasing 

the Permanent Funds of the Society 278 

Ollicers Elected 278 

Annual Dinner 279 

Tribute to Dr. Gould 280 


Members Elected 282 

Gift from Albert Matthews, of a fac-simile reproduction of 

Bradford's History of Plymouth Plantation 282 

Resolutions on the Death of Dr. Gould 283 

Remarks by James Bradley Thayer 284 

Remarks by Philip Howes Sears 286 

Remarks by Seth Carlo Chandler 290 

Remarks by Darwin Erastus Ware 291 

Remarks by Samuel Lothrop Thorndike 295 

Remarks by Edward Wheelwright 298 

Remarks by George Lincoln Goodale 304 

Remarks by Samuel Wells 307 

Remarks by George Silsbee Hale 308 

Remarks by William Watson 310 

Letter from Henry Herbert Edes 311 


Remarks by Vice-President Lowell, in announcing the death of 

Francis Amasa Walker 313 

Remarks by Geobob Lincoln Goodale 315 

Remarks by George Silsbee Hale 315 



Paper by John Noble, on The Early Court Files of the County 

of Suffolk 317 

Remarks by Abner Cheney Goodell, Jr 326 

Remarks by Andrew McFarland Davis 328 

Remarks by Henry Herbert Edes, in referring to the Tributes 
annually paid at Mount Vernon, 14 December, to the 

memory of Washington . 328 

Memoir of William Gordon Weld, by Joseph Henry Allen . . 329 
Memoir of Martin Brimmer, by George Silsbee Hale .... 337 
Memoir of Edward Wigglesworth, by Henry Parker Quincy . 348 
Memoir of John Forrester Andrew, by Edmund March Wheel- 
wright 351 


Inaugural Address of Edward Wheelwright, as President of 

the Society 375 

Remarks by Henry Herbert Edes, in communicating a Corre- 
spondence with John George Bourinot respecting Pierre 

Boucher de la Broquerie 377 

Text of the Correspondence 378 

Vote to increase the number of members of the Committee to 
consider the subject of increasing the Permanent Funds 

of the Society 379 

Names of the Committee 379 

Paper by President Wheelwright, on Three Letters by an 

American Loyalist (Martin Gay) and his wife, 1775-1788 . 379 

Paper by Andrew McFarland Davis, on the Harvard Commence- 
ment Programme of 1723 400 

Announcement by Robert Noxon Toppan, of the Incorporation 

of the Historical Society of Old Newbury 404 

Communication by John Noble, of a Letter from the Privy 
Council Office, London, respecting the Libel Suit of Knowles 
v. Douglass 405 

Members Elected 405 




Death of George Otis Shattuck announced 406 

Remarks by George Silsbee Hale 406 

Paper by Robert Noxon Toppan, on The Failure to Establish an 

Hereditary Political Aristocracy in the Colonies .... 407 
Remarks by Henry Herbert Edes, in communicating an unpub- 
lished Letter of President Dunster to a Committee of the 
General Court, in 1653, concerning the affairs of Harvard 

College 415 

Text of the Letter 419 

Remarks by Andrew McFarland Davis 426 

Communication from Abner Cheney Goodell, Jr 429 

Remarks by George Lyman Kittredge, on the Gorham Papers 

and a Military Expedition to Cuba in 1762 430 

Paper by Albert Matthews, on the Use at American Colleges of 

the word Campus 431 


Committee to Nominate Officers appointed 438 

Committee to Examine the Treasurer's Accounts appointed . . . 438 

Death of Darwin Erastus Ware announced 438 

Remarks by James Bradley Thayer 438 

Remarks by John Noble 445 

Paper by John Noble, on A Trial, in 1685, for Frequenting the 

College Contrary to Law 448 

Communication by Henry Herbert Edes, of an unpublished Letter 

from Nathan Dane to Nathaniel Gorham 470 

Remarks by Henry Herbert Edes, calling attention to the Tablet 
upon the new Building on the site of the First Meeting 
House built in Boston in 1632 471 

Announcement by Andrew MoFapland Davis, of the Organiza- 
tion of The North Brookfield Historical Society, The New 
England Numismatic and Archaeological Society, and The 



Bunker Hill Historical Society; and of the Incorporation 
of The Quaboag Historical Society, The Monson Historical 
Society, Methuen Historical Society, Fitchburg Historical 
Society, The Billerica Historical Society, Fort Massachu- 
setts Historical Society, The Medford Historical Society, 
The Manchester Historical Society, The Peabody Histori- 
cal Society, Littleton Historical Society, and The Town- 
send Historical Society 471 

Remarks by the President, respecting the proposed Gould 

Memorial Fund 474 

Members Elected 475 

Memoir of Benjamin Apthorp Gould, by Samuel Lothrop 

Thorndike 476 

Tribute to Judge Lowell 489 

Index 491 



Portrait of Benjamin Apthorp Gould Frontispiece 

View of the Gable of the Porch of St. Peter's Church, 

Hargrave, Cheshire, built by Sir Thomas Mowlson, 1627 91 

Portrait of Rear-Admiral Sir Charles Knowles .... 213 

Portrait of Martin Brimmer 337 

Portrait of Edward Wigglesworth 348 

Portrait of John Forrester Andrew . 351 

Portrait of Martin Gay 379 

Plans of the Martin Gay Estate, Union Street, Boston . . 391 

View of the Office of the Revere Copper Company, Union 

Street, Boston, 1840 399 

Fac-simile of a Letter of Henry Dunster to a Committee of 
the General Court, in 1653, concerning the affairs of 

Harvard College 419 




€^e Colonial ^>ocfet? of $®&mtyumm 

Elected 21 November, 1899. 




0ecorbin0 &ecretarp. 

<£orre£pon&in0 &ecretarp. 

HENRY HERBERT EDES, Esq. . . ..... . . Cambridge. 


Recutita 0pember£. 







♦Benjamin Aptiiorp Gould, LL.D.,F.R.S. 

♦Hon. John Lowell, LL.D. 

*IIon. Leverett Saltonstall, A.M. 

William Exdicott, A.M. 

Henry Herbert Edes, Esq. 

John Chester Inches, Esq. 
♦Daniel Denison Slade, M.D. 

James Bradley Thayer, LL.D. 

Andrew McFaiiland Davis, A.M. 

William Watson, Ph.D. 

Henry Winchester Cunningham, A.B. 

Gustavus Arthur Hilton, LL.B. 

Henry Ernest Woods, Esq. 

Charles Sedgwick Rackemann, A.M. 

Abner Cheney Goodell, A.M. 

George Wigglesworth, A.M. 

Hon. Francis Cabot Lowell, A.B. 

Waldo Lincoln, A.B. 

Samuel Wells, A.B. 

William Watson Goodwin, D.C.L. 
♦Hon. George Silsbee Hale, A.M. 

Joshua Montgomery Sears, A.B. 
♦Hon. John Forrester Andrew, LL.B. 

Edward Wheelwright, A.M. 
♦Samuel Johnson, A.M. 
♦Henry Parker Quincy, M.D. 
♦William Gordon Weld, Esq. 

Seth Carlo Chandler, LL.D. 

Moses Williams, A.B. 

James Mills Peirce, A.M. 

Charles Montraville Green, M.D. 

Theodore Frelingiiuysen Dwight, Esq. 

Henri Williams, A.B. 
♦Philip Howes Sears, A.M. 
♦lion. Francis Amasa Walker, LL.D. 
♦Francis Veronies Balch, LL.B. 

George Lyman Kittredge, A.B. 
♦George Martin Lane, LL.D. 

James Barb Ames, LL.D. 

Hon. Charles Warren Clifford, A.M. 

Augustus Hemenway, A.B. 

Gardiner Martin Lane, A.B. 

Robert Noxon Toppan, A.M. 
♦Edward Wigglesworth, M.D. 

Nathaniel Paine, A.M. 

Frederick Lewis Gay, Esq. 

John Noble, LL.B. 

Samuel Lothrop Thorndike, A.M. 
♦Hon. Frederick Lothrop Ames, A.B. 
♦Hon. Darwin Erastus Ware, A.M. 

Charles Augustus Chase, A.M. 

Charles Francis Choate, A.M. 
♦Francis Parkman, LL.D. 
♦Hon. Martin Brimmer, A.B. 

Charles Pickering Bowditch, A.M. 

Hon. George Frederick Williams, A.B. 

Walter Cabot Baylies, A.B. 

Frank Brewster, A.M. 
♦Sigourney Butler, LL.B. 

Stanley Cunningham, A.B. 
♦Hon. James Walker Austin, A.M. 

Hon. Richard Olney, LL.D. 

Francis Henry Lincoln, A.M. 

William Cross Williamson, A.M. 

Samuel Swett Green, A.M. 

Rev. Exdicott Peabody, LL.M. 
♦Hon. Willtam Eustis Russell, LL.D. 

Franklin Carter, LL.D. 

Hon. Roger Wolcott, LL.D. 

Hon. John Lathrop, A.M. 

Rev. Charles Carroll Everett, LL.D. 

Hon. James Madison Barker, LL.D. 

Rev. Edward Griffin Porter, A.M. 

Hon. William Crowninshield Endicott, 

George Lincoln Goodale, LL.D. 
♦Rev. Joseph Henry Allen, D.D. 

Hon. Edward Francis Johnson, LL.B. 



George Fox Tucker, Ph.D. 
*George Otis Shattuck, LL.B. 
Edmund March Wheelwright, A.B. 
William Taggard Piper, Ph.D. 
Henry Dwight Sedgwick, A.B. 
Robert Tillinghast Babson, LL.B. 
George Nixon Black, Esq. 
John Bartlett, A.M. 
David Rice Whitney, A.M. 
Rev. Arthur Lawrence, D.D. 
Eliot Channing Clarke, A.B. 
Charles Henry Davis, A.B. 
Edward William Hooper, LL.D. 
Henry Walbridge Taft, A.M. 
Hon. John Eliot Sanford, LL.D. 
Nathaniel Cushing Nash, A.M. 
Rev. Henry Ainsworth Parker, A.M. 
John Elbridge Hudson, LL.B. 
Lindsay Swift, A.B. 
Charles Frank Mason, A.B. 
Appleton Prentiss Clark Griffin, Esq. 
Richard Middlecott Saltonstall, A.B. 

Albert Matthews, A.B. 

Andrew Cunningham Wheelwright 

Charles Armstrong Snow, A.B. 
Thomas Minns, Esq. 
Charles Goddard Weld, M.D. 
Edward Appleton Bangs, A.B. 
William Coolidge Lane, A.B. 
Louis Cabot, A.B. 
William Cushing Wait, A.M. 
Hon. Jeremiah Smith, LL.D. 
John Eliot Thayer, A.B. 
Augustus Lowell, A.M. 
Denison Rogers Slade, Esq. 
James Bradstreet Greenough, A.B. 
Charles Knowles Bolton, A.B. 
James Lyman Whitney, A.M. 
Arthur Theodore Lyman, A.M. 
Frederic Haines Curtiss, Esq. 
Worthington Chauncey Ford, Esq. 
James Ford Rhodes, LL.D. 


Hon. Melville Weston Fuller, LL.D. 
Hon. Edward John Phelps, LL.D. 
Hon. Grover Cleveland, LL.D. 
Hon. Joseph Hodges Choate, LL.D. 

Hon. James Coolidge Carter, LL.D. 
Simon Newcomb, LL.D., F.R.S. 
Samuel Pierpont Langley, D.C.L. 


Hon. Joseph Williamson, Litt.D. 
John Franklin Jameson, LL.D. 
Hon. Simeon Eben Baldwin, LL.D. 
Edward Singleton Holden, LL.D. 
Herbert Baxter Adams, LL.D. 
Hon. Horace Davis, LL.D. 


Rev. William Jewett Tucker, LL.D. 
Hon. Joshua Lawbence Chamberlain, 

Franklin Bowditch Dexter, A.M. 
Hon. James Burrill Angell, LL.D. 
Rev. George Park Fisher, LL.D. 

Edward Field, A.M. 
Hon. John Andrew Peters, LL.D. 
Hon. John Howland Ricketson, A.M. 
Daniel Coit Gilman, LL.D. 
Frederick Jackson Turner, Ph.D. 
Rev. William Reed Huntington, 

George Parker Winship, A.M. 
Oliver Wolcott Gibbs, LL.D. 
Hon. James Phinney Baxter, A.M. 
Arthur Twining Hadley, LL.D. 
Hon. John Chandler Bancroft Davis, 



Members who have died since the publication of the preceding volume 
of Transactions, with the Date of Death. 


Hon. William Eustis Russell, LL.D. ... 16 July, 1896, 
Benjamin Apthorp Gould, LL.D., F.R.S. . 26 November, 1896. 

Hon. Francis Amasa Walker, LL.D. ... 5 January, 1897. 

George Otis Shattuck, LL.B 23 February, 1897. 

Hon. Darwin Erastus Ware, A.M. ... 2 April, 1897. 

Hon. John Lowell, LL.D .14 May, 1897. 

George Martin Lane, LL.D 30 June, 1897. 

Hon. George Silsbee Hale, A.M 27 July, 1897. 

Francis Vergnies Balch, LL.B 4 February, 1898. 

Rev. Joseph Henry Allen, D.D 20 March, 1898. 

Philip Howes Sears, A.M 1 May, 1898. 

Sigourney Butler, LL.B 7 June, 1898. 

Henry Parker Quincy, M.D 11 March, 1899. 

Samuel Johnson, A.M 13 August, 1899. 








A Stated Meeting of the Society was held in the Hall 
of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences on 
Wednesday, 16 January, 1895, at three o'clock in the after- 
noon, the President, Benjamin Apthorp Gould, LL.D., in 
the chair. 

After the Records of the December Meeting had been read 
and approved, the Honorable Joseph Hodges Choate was 
elected an Honorary Member. 

Mr. Francis H. Lincoln communicated the following 
additions to the list of Historical Societies in Massachu- 
setts : 1 — 

1 Mr. Lincoln also gave the following information : — 

The Daughters of the Revolution, Commonwealth of Massachusetts, was 
incorporated 28 February, 1894. 

The Hills Family Genealogical and Historical Association, Boston, was incor- 
porated 6 July, 1894. Its purposes are : The collection, compilation, and pub- 
lication of such data and information as may be obtained concerning the 
genealogy and history of the Hills family. 

The Naval Order of the United States, Commandery of the Commonwealth 
of Massachusetts, Boston, was incorporated 14 December, 1894. Its purposes 
are : To transmit to latest posterity the glorious names and memories of the 
illustrious naval commanders and their companion officers in arms, who are 
identified with many of the principle (sic) battles and famous victories of the 
several wars in which the United States has participated, and which were 
fought and achieved by the naval forces ; to encourage research and publica- 
tion of data pertaining to naval art and science, and to establish a library in 
which to preserve all documents, wills, books, portraits, and relics relating to 
the Navy and its heroes at all times. 



This society was organized 10 September, 1894. The objects 
are denned in the Constitution as follows : " The object of this 
society shall be the awakening of an interest in local history ; also 
the collection of papers, documents, and other articles relating 
thereto, and of specimens of natural history connected therewith, 
the preserving of records of passing events that may become of 
value in the future, and the securing of a safe repository for the 


This association was incorporated 9 July, 1894. Its purposes 
are defined to be "to collect and preserve historical relics, docu- 
ments, pictures, books, etc." 


This society was incorporated 11 May, 1894. 

Mr. Andrew McFarland Davis read the following 
paper : — 


For a proper appreciation of the state of public opinion which 
made possible the extraordinary experiment in economics called 
the Land Bank or Manufactory Scheme, some knowledge is requi- 
site of the struggles for a circulating medium through which the 
Colonists had passed during their century and a little over of occu- 
pation of the Massachusetts Bay. Since opinions upon topics of 
this sort were largely dependent in New England upon the condi- 
tion of knowledge in the mother country, it would be interesting 

1 The sources of authority for this story of the Land and Silver Banks are 
mainly to be found in the Massachusetts Archives and the Suffolk Court Files. 
[A Calendar of these documents by the author of this paper will be found in 
Volume iv. of the Publications of this Society.] Occasionally the thread of the 
narrative prior to 1743 is maintained by use of facts furnished by a contempo- 
rary pamphlet entitled, — 

An Account of the Rise, Progress, and Consequences of the two late Schemes 
commonly call'd the Land Bank or Manufactory Scheme and the Silver Scheme, 
in the Province of the Massachusetts Bay. Wherein the Conduct of the late 

and present G r during their Ad — ns is occasionally consider'd and com- 

par'd. In a letter from a gentleman in Boston to his Friend in London. 
Printed in the year 1744. 


to study the cause of the sluggish growth there of knowledge of 
banking, to seek for the reason why an intelligent people were 
so slow in realizing the potency of the great banks on the Con- 
tinent in stimulating the commercial prosperity of the cities in 
which they were located, and to point out certain coincidences and 
connections in the propositions submitted here and in England by 
men of speculative temperament to relieve the supposed need of a 
circulating medium through the establishment of banks of issue. 
However interesting such an examination might prove, it would be 
entirely impossible to compress it within the limits of a paper which 
should attempt to give even an outline sketch of the history of the 
Land Bank of 1740. 

If the subject be examined from the standpoint alone of the 
economist, the material at command, especially if we should include 
a review of contemporaneous opinions, is adequate to fill the time 
at our disposal. If treated in relation to the bearing of its history 
upon political opinions, its enormous importance would compel the 
amplification of details to an extent that would in itself furnish 
abundant occupation for the time ordinarily assigned to a paper at 
our meetings. If we should leave to the student of economics the 
study of his specialty, and to the historian the task of measuring 
the influence of the events connected with the closing of this affair 
upon the minds of the people of Massachusetts Bay, we should still 
find that any attempt to give in one afternoon a detailed analysis 
either of the legislation connected with the closing of the Land 
Bank or of the litigation in consequence thereof would fail for 
lack of time. 

Under these circumstances I am compelled to make a selection 
from this superabundance of material ; and, taking into considera- 
tion that very little has been published in available form from 
which can be obtained a coherent narrative of the events connected 
with the formation and the arbitrary closing of this so-called bank, 
I have thought it would be wise for me to confine myself to a 
simple chronological statement of these events, preceded by a brief 
introduction which will tend to show the circumstances under which 
the people of this Province thought there was need for relief of 
this general character, and which will set forth the possible influence 
which previous experience may have had in leading men of fair 
intelligence to the conclusion that such an ill-founded scheme might 


The first settlers of Massachusetts brought with them but little 
coin, and for a long time all transactions were by barter. The ac- 
counts of Harvard College show that for many years term-bills were 
paid in produce, live-stock, meat, and occasionally with curious 
articles raked up from the family chests of student debtors. The 
experiments with bullets and wampum as a legal currency in a 
limited way are known, and it is also familiar to all that corn was 
receivable in payment of country rates, 1 and that notes were fre- 
quently made payable in commodities. 

The fact that the thoughts of our people were from time to time 
during the seventeenth century directed toward the establishment 
of some sort of bank has been fully demonstrated, and the drift of 
public opinion which led up to the attempted organization of a bank 
of issue in 1686, under the approval and with the sanction of the 
Council, for the ostensible purpose of loaning its bills upon real 
and personal security and imperishable merchandise, has also been 
shown by the careful collation of facts, with minute observation and 
patient industry, from numerous recondite sources of authority. 2 It 
is not known why this scheme, thus started under government 
patronage, was abandoned before it had accomplished any of its 
contemplated objects ; but in 1688, when it was laid upon the shelf, 
the promoters still had in possession the printing press with which 
they had purposed to manufacture their paper currency. 3 It is pos- 

1 " In our most happy times (as in our fondness we call them) we allowed 
our Governor an Hundred per annum &c and when the Salary was changed 
from Corn-Specie to money, there was a muttering and grumbling in the coun- 
try, as tho' they were going into a mutiny." — (A Word of Comfort to a Melan- 
choly Country or the Bank of Credit erected in the Massachusetts Bay, fairly 
defended by a discovery of the Great Benefit, accruing by it to the whole 
Province ; with a remedy for recovering a Civil State when sinking under des- 
peration by defeat on their Bank of Credit. By Amicus Patrice. Boston, 
1721, p. 9.) 

2 By Dr. J. Hammond Trumbull. See Proceedings of the American An- 
tiquarian Society, October, 1881, p. 266 et aeq. 

8 Felt, alluding to this Bank, says (Historical Account of Massachusetts Cur- 
rency, p. 47): " How long or how far the preceding Corporation continued their 
operations, we are unable to tell." It seems to me that John BlackwelPs letter 
of 26 'I ulv, 1088 (Massachusetts Archives, cxxix. 63), which opens, "I perceive 
you have declyned the concerning yourselves any further in the Bank affairs," 
is conclusive enough. It appears from this letter that the press was actually 
set up and used " for tryall of the plates & printing off some bills." 


sible that the question of a government issue of notes may by that 
time have been under consideration. It was only two years after 
the final abandonment of the proposed bank that the emergency 
arose which brought about the first emission of these notes. They 
were familiarly known as Colony or Old Charter Bills, and were put 
forth to pay the expenses of Phips's unfortunate expedition against 
Canada. Their amount was limited in 1691, and they were retired 
in 1692 ; but some of them were from year to year reissued, even 
under the Province Charter, until 1702, when the first emission of 
Province Bills was made. Their appearance seems to have sug- 
gested to tradesmen that in a similar way they too might meet their 
obligations, and perhaps contribute to the circulating medium ; for 
about this time we begin to hear of Shop Notes, which apparently 
were promises to pay in goods, issued by tradesmen. For a time 
these Shop Notes worked great hardship to laborers and others who 
were by their circumstances forced to receive them, 1 but their lim- 
ited circulation prevented them from being a serious element of 
disturbance to the currency. 

The scarcity of money, which had led the Council, in 1686, to 
favor a bank of issue which should effect loans, again attracted the 
attention of legislators in 1701, and the matter being brought be- 
fore the General Court, a committee was appointed to find out some 
suitable means to remedy the evil. This committee recommended, 
among other things, the establishment of a bank of credit ; but the 
section of their report in which this recommendation was incorpo- 
rated was rejected. 

Meantime the emission of government bills, which originally con- 
templated only the furnishing of a temporary expedient, had gone 
on increasing in amount from year to year. It was the custom to 
pledge as security for the redemption of the bills certain specific 
taxes of specially designated years. By 1714 the income of the 
Province from taxation was pledged, either wholly or in part, each 
year for six years to come. It is needless to say thai; as time 
went on the issues increased, and the time for which the revenue 

1 The caulkers, in 1741, alleged that they had for many years " labored under 
great inconvenience, and had suffered much damage wrong and injury in receiv- 
ing their pay for their work, by notes on shops for money or goods, and thereby 
had greatly impoverished themselves and families " (News-Letter, No. 1926, 
19 February, 1741). 


of the Province was thus anticipated became longer. Each bill was 
in form a certificate by a committee of the General Court to the 
effect that it would be received as so much money in public pay- 
ments. Inasmuch as some of the bills in circulation could not be 
received by the Province for several years to come, it was natural 
that all should feel the effects of this discredit. This fact alone 
would have caused them to depreciate, even if the amount then in 
circulation had been properly proportioned to the needs of the com- 
munity. The Province Bills and the Bills of the neighboring gov- 
ernment in circulation in the Province had by that time driven all 
the gold and silver out of circulation, and much of it out of the 
country. The depreciation and distrust of the bills was sufficient 
to impair their efficacy, and to cause a clamor for more circulating 
medium. The remedy was supposed to be more paper money, and 
this time the proposition came from outside the legislature. 

In 1714 an attempt was made to secure from the General Court 
authority to organize a private bank of issue. A pamphlet which 
had been published in London in 1G88 setting forth a scheme for a 
bank, and rehearsing a number of arguments in its favor, was re- 
printed in Boston. 1 It was in substance a proposition for a partner- 
ship to emit bills on security, to be supplemented by obtaining the 
signatures of citizens to an agreement to receive such bills in trade. 
It was stated that the proposed Boston scheme differed in some of 
its details from the plan set forth in the pamphlet, but that in the 
main the two projects were identical. 

The application of the promoters of this scheme for the support 
and approval of the Government aroused a spirit of bitter opposi- 
tion, which manifested itself not only within the limits of the Gen- 
eral Court, but found expression elsewhere. To forestall the argu- 
ment that the bills thus proposed to be issued were needed as a 
circulating medium, the enemies of the scheme introduced an Act 
authorizing the Province to furnish Province Bills to citizens, on 
security of real estate. The two plans came to be designated the 

1 A Model for Erecting a Bank of Credit with a Discourse in Explanation 
1 hereof Adapted to the Use of any Trading Countrey, where there is a Scarcity of 
.Moneys: More Especially for his Majesty's Plantations in America. . . . Lon- 
don : Printed in the year 16S8. Reprinted at Boston in New-England in the 
Year 171 1. 

See also Proceedings of the American Antiquarian Society, October, 1884, 
New Series;, iii. 302, note E. 


Private Bank and the Public Bank ; and the General Court was 
so completely converted to the Public Bank that it not only author- 
ized the issue of £50,000 in Province bills to be loaned for five 
years on real security, but it also passed an order forbidding any 
company or partnership from emitting bills of credit as a medium 
of exchange or trade without its consent and approbation. The 
positive stand thus taken by the Government in 1714 did not, how- 
ever, put an entire stop to the discussion ; for we have evidence that 
the matter was still being agitated in December, 1715, through a 
town meeting then held in Boston, at which the question was sub- 
mitted whether the influence of the town should be given in favor 
of a public or a private bank. The agitation could only have been 
prolonged at this period by those who favored the private bank, and 
it is clear that they were signally defeated, since Boston not only 
voted to favor a public, but even went to the extent of placing on 
record the town's disapproval of a private bank. 1 Hutchinson 
says : " The controversy had an universal spread, and divided 
towns, parishes, and particular families." 

The £50,000 in Province Bills for loans in 1714 were followed 
by a similar issue of £100,000 in 1716, to be loaned for ten years. 
In 1721 £50,000, and in 1728 £60,000 were distributed among the 
towns for use in the same way, provision being made for their being 
called in by subsequent tax levies. All of these bills were receiv- 
able with a five per cent premium in favor of taxes; yet, by 1720, 
notwithstanding the large number of bills which still remained in 
circulation, it was found necessary to make provision for the re- 
ceipt of commodities in the adjustment of taxes. 

In 1733 there was much discontent at the situation. Massa- 
chusetts and New Hampshire were restrained by royal instructions 
in their capacity to emit bills, but Rhode Island had full power to 
float them at will. The bills of the latter Colony flowed into Mas- 
sachusetts ; and when in July of that year an issue of £100,000 
of them was made, for loans at five per cent, a number of Boston 
merchants entered into an agreement with each other not to receive 
these bills in trade. As an offset to this emission, and for the pur- 
pose of driving the Rhode Island bills out of the market by filling 
the gap which they were expected to occupy, these merchants 

1 Boston Kecord Commissioners' Reports (Town Records, 1700-1728), viii. 


organized a company, and issued £110,000 of their own notes, re- 
deemable in ten years in silver at 19s. per oz., x the bills resting 
for their security solely upon the solvency of the individuals 
composing the company. These bills were known as Merchants' 
Notes; and, as silver rose rapidly shortly after their issue, in con- 
sequence of large emissions of paper money by the Province of the 
Massachusetts Bay, the Merchants' Notes, being payable at a specific 
rate, were hoarded, and disappeared from circulation. The confi- 
dence which the public thus showed in these notes induced some 
New Hampshire merchants to make a similar attempt in 1734. 
Their notes bore interest at one per cent, and were payable in bills 
of the several Colonies, in silver, in gold, or in hemp at Portsmouth 
prices, in 1747. 2 

In 1737 there was a simultaneous issue in Massachusetts of two 
classes of Province Bills, one being identical in form with those 
which were already in circulation, while those of the other class 
stated that they were to be received on the basis of twenty shillings 
for three ounces of silver, troy weight. Bills of these forms were 
for a time thereafter distinguished under the titles of " old tenor " 
and " new tenor." The latter are, however, after 1741, sometimes 
designated " middle tenor bills." The old bills were received for 
all public dues. In the middle tenor bills import or tunnage dues 
were excepted ; 3 while the last tenor bills, winch were issued at 

1 The notes are generally described in the language used in the text. In a 
pamphlet entitled "The Melancholy State of the Province considered in a Let- 
ter from a Gentleman in Boston to his friend in the Country, . . . printed in 
the Year 1736," it is stated (page 2) that "the first proposal was to make one 
hundred thousand pounds in notes to be paid to the Trustees of the Bank in 
ten wars in silver at Twenty shillings per ounce, the Silver to remain in the 
Bank until the Ten Years were expired." The writer goes on to say that they 
were " perswaded to alter the Scheme and agree to have the Silver drawn out at 
three periods viz. three tenths at the end of three years, & three tenths more 
at the end of other three years; and the remaining four tenths at the end of 
the tenth year." 

a These notes are described in chapter 21, Province Laws 1734-1735 (Prov- 
ince Laws, ii. 713). The fact that they bore interest is stated in the lieportof 
the Board of Trade to the Privy Council (Ibid. ii. 747). 

8 The new tenor notes were originally issued in 1741 upon the basis of twenty 
shillings for three ounces of coined silver, troy weight. In 1744 there was a 
change in the portion of the note defining the value at which the notes would 
bo received in the Treasury. Bills under this new form were still receivable in 


one valuation in 1741 and at another in 1744, were to be accepted 
in all payments in the treasury. The old tenor bills were issued 
in 1736 on the basis of three to one of the new tenor. Old tenor 
bills were therefore receivable for public dues at the rate of twenty 
shillings for the ounce of coined silver. Their discredit in the 
market was even greater than the amount recognized by the Gov- 
ernment. Hutchinson quotes silver at twenty-seven shillings just 
after the issue of the Merchants' Notes in 1733, and says it remained 
about the same rate for several years, when it took another jump. 
We can perhaps trace the movement if we look forward to an order 
passed by the General Court in 1742 to the effect that one pound 
of the then newly emitted bills should be received as the equivalent 
of four pounds old tenor, or one pound six shillings and eight pence 
new tenor. It is obvious from this order that the new tenor form 
had not fulfilled its purpose, but that Government paper had 
reached such a discredit that in one and the same document three 
rates were prescribed at which different issues should be received. 
In the final redemption of the bills they were grouped in two classes, 
all after the first form being placed upon the same level. 

A part of the discredit of the Government bills was due to the 
redundancy of paper money occasioned by the circulation of notes 
of neighboring colonies. The first step towards the correction of 
this evil was taken in 1738, by the passage of an Act restraining 
the circulation of certain bills of the neighboring colonies. Other 
Acts of this sort, more sweeping in their character, were afterwards 

In 1739 John Read of Boston submitted a proposition to the 
General Court for a bank of issue based upon a twenty per cent 
fund of silver. 1 No action was taken upon this proposition. 

Such was the state of the currency at the end of the year 1739, 
and such had been the experience of the Province in reaching this 

all payments to the Treasury, but the basis of valuation was reduced to two 
ounces, thirteen pennyweights, and eight grains of coined silver, troy weight. 

Douglass says that they were known as old tenor, middle tenor, new tenor 
first, and new tenor second. He adds that the latter, although about twelve per 
cent worse than the new tenor firsts, passed indifferently among the people 
at the same value. (A Summary, Historical and Political, of the first Plant- 
ing, progressive Improvements, and present State of the British Settlements 
in North-America. ... By William Douglass, M.D., i. 493.) 

1 Massachusetts Archives, cii. 113. 



distracted condition of affairs. There was in circulation an amount 
of Province Bills and bills of the adjoining governments, more than 
adequate, if current at par, to furnish a medium for trade. Yet so 
great was the depreciation that provision had to be made in each 
Tax Act for the reception of commodities in the adjustment of 
taxes. The only bills which had apparently held their own were 
the unsecured Merchants' Notes which have already been described. 

At the session of the General Court begun on the fifth of De- 
cember, 1789, and continued in the month of January, 1740, a 
scheme was presented by John Colman and three hundred and 
ninety-five others for emitting bills secured by real estate, which 
were to serve as a medium for trade. In submitting the list of 
subscribers to this project, the promoters called attention to the 
small size of the individual subscriptions, and stated that they had 
acted in the matter by advice and persuasion, being desirous to 
interest many in the scheme. Hutchinson, treating of the same 
point, says that the greater part of those who were interested in 
this scheme, as well as of those who were concerned in the pro- 
posed bank in 1714, were men of small means. 

John Colman, whose name headed the list of subscribers, was one 
of those who had been interested in the similar project in 1714, 
which was then called the Private Bank. He had in 1720 published 
a pamphlet in which he stated that it would be many years before 
a return to a specie basis could be expected ; and as a temporary 
remedy he suggested a bank which should emit bills on real security, 
the loans to bear six per cent interest, and the surplus revenue 
above expenses to be invested in silver and held until the profits 
should amount to the original sum emitted. 1 He claimed to have 
had some correspondence with Governor Belcher on the subject of 
the scheme which he now proposed, and had for some time been at 
work endeavoring to interest people in its favor. On the tenth of 
March, 1740, a broadside was issued, in which it was stated that in 
order to redress the distressing circumstances under which the 
Province labored for want of a circulating medium, it was proposed 

1 The Distressed state of The Town of Boston once more considered, And 
methods for Redress humbly proposed. With remarks on the pretended Coun- 
tryman's Answer to the Book, entitled The Distressed State of the town of 
Boston &c. With a Sohseme for a Bank Laid down: And methods for bring- 
in- in silver money, proposed. By John Colman. 


to set up a bank on land security, no person to be admitted but 
such as dwelt in the Province and had real estate therein. It was 
announced that on certain days a committee would be in session at 
the Exchange Tavern in King Street, to receive subscriptions. 
The scheme when analyzed may be briefly stated as follows : Sub- 
scribers to a so-called stock of £150,000 simply agreed to borrow a 
certain amount in bills of the company. Their voice in the affairs 
of the company was determined by the size of the subscription. 
The only payment which was required to be made was forty 
shillings on each thousand pounds, two-tenths of one per cent 
of the loan, for organization expenses. Each subscriber was to 
furnish satisfactory mortgage security for his loan, on which he 
was to pay interest at the rate of three per cent per annum, and 
the principal was to be paid in twenty annual instalments of five 
per cent each. These payments were to be made in Manufactory 
Notes, or in hemp, flax, cordage, bar-iron, cast-iron, and certain other 
enumerated commodities. There were provisions as to the organi- 
zation, and the annual meeting ; and a clause which provided that 
loans not exceeding one hundred pounds might be made on per- 
sonal security. 

The bill which it was proposed to emit was originally printed in 
the broadside as follows : — 

" Twenty Shillings. 
1 ' We promise for ourselves and Partners to receive this Twenty Shilling 
Bill of Credit as so much Lawful Money in all payments, Trade and 

" Boston, etc." 

The words " Boston, etc." were then marked out, and the fol- 
lowing words written in : — ■ 

" and after ye expiration of twenty } T ears to pay ye possessor ye value 
thereof in manufactures of this Province. 
"Boston, etc." 

The thirteenth article in the prospectus required each subscriber 
to sign an instrument in which he agreed to indemnify the signers 
of the notes. 

The crudeness of this whole proceeding finds no better illustra- 
tion than in the proposition to emit a note which contains no 


agreement to redeem ; nor was the document much improved by 
the words which were added in writing. As a matter of fact the 
note which was actually issued was signed by the Directors, and 
read as follows : — 

" We jointly and severally promise for ourselves and partners to take 
this bill as lawful money at six shillings eight pence per ounce in all pay- 
ments, trade, and business, and for stock in our treasury at any time ; 
and after twenty years to pay the same at that estimate on demand to 
Mr. Joseph Marion or order in the produce or manufactures enumerated 
in our scheme, for value received." 

No provision was made in the prospectus for the use by the com- 
pany of any of its bills in trade. It is stated, however, that in the 
articles as finally settled £ 10,000 were allowed as a sum to be thus 
employed, and the accounts of the company show that their agent 
entered upon numerous mercantile ventures. 

The Company was properly designated by the Governor u a scheme 
for emitting bills or notes," and by the Committee of the General 
Court a projection " for making and emitting notes of hand as a 
medium of trade." It had no capital stock, and the only provision 
for any possible fund to be held as a security for the bills is to 
be found in the section which provides for the distribution of 

I have called attention to the fact that in 1720, Colman had pub- 
lished a scheme for a bank, in which he proposed to create his capital 
out of the reserved profits arising from the business. A similar pro- 
position is to be found in the tenth article of this prospectus, which 
declares that there shall be an annual dividend, " provided always 
that in all such dividends care shall be taken that there still remain 
in the stock double the principal paid in from time to time as 

It is obvious that it was possible for the mortgage loans of the 
Land Bank to be paid off entirely in commodities, thus leaving the 
notes afloat without other security than was afforded by the part- 
nership. It may therefore seem strange that the opinion should 
have been held by any number of men that the notes under such 
riivuinstaiKvs could have obtained circulation, but it must not be 
overlooked that at that very time the Merchants' Notes were held 
at a premium of thirty-three per cent over Province Bills. The 


cause for this lay in the fact that they were redeemable at an ex- 
pressed rate in silver, and that perfect confidence was felt in the 
solvency of those who issued them. The conditions of the two ex- 
periments were not parallel ; nevertheless, this premium evidently 
inspired the belief that a note issued by a company without capi- 
tal, which was by its terms not redeemable until twenty years after 
date, and was then payable in commodities, would find circulation 
in the community. A part of this confidence is unquestionably to 
be found in the numbers already interested in the scheme, whose 
example and enthusiasm brought in new converts daily, and a part 
is perhaps due to the fact that people were accustomed to pay their 
taxes in commodities. The rate also at which the commodities 
were convertible, according to the terms of the amended note, was 
a favorable one. 

As early as 1720 a pamphleteer had suggested that the Province 
should organize a bank of this sort, and should loan Province Bills 
for terms of twenty-one years on security of lands, or merchan- 
dise. 1 Twenty annual payments, beginning the second year, at 
the rate of six per cent per annum, were to wipe out all claims for 
principal and interest. Such payments were to be made in hemp, 
flax, turpentine, pitch, tar, rosin, fish-oil, whalebone, or any other 
commodity that would prevent importation, or that was good for 
exportation, especially what the Crown and Nation of Great Britain 
encouraged. It was quite likely that Colman obtained from this 
pamphlet the idea which converted his Land Bank of 1714 into the 
Land Bank and Manufactory Scheme of 1740, — the encouragement 
of local industries, and the prevention of imports being elements in 
the scheme which appealed to the populace. Apart from the ex- 
perience that the community already had in the use of commodities 
in the adjustment of taxes, they had seen the New Hampshire Mer- 
chants' Notes of 1734, which were not payable till 1747, and which 
might then be paid in hemp at Portsmouth prices, circulate so 
readily that legislation was necessary to drive them out. 

The peculiar form of the note as originally printed in the pros- 
pectus may have been the outcome of the use of Province Bills, 
which were not in the form of promises to pay. 

1 Some Proposals To benefit the Province, — a tract -without a titlepage but 
with these headlines on page 1. At the end, on page 15, is Boston: Printed 
for and Sold by Benj. Eliot, at his Shop below the Town-House. 1720. 


The activity which Colman displayed, the number of persons 
whom he had interested in his scheme, and the certainty that he 
would attempt to put his notes on the market aroused a powerful 
opposition. A number of Boston merchants formed an association, 
afterwards known as the Silver Scheme, the purpose of which 
was to issue bills, which, like the Merchants' Notes of 1733, should 
be on a silver basis. 1 It is not clear when the change which I 
have pointed out in the notes of the Land Bank, placing them on 
the basis of the then par value of silver, was adopted. It is quite 
likely to have been a counter thrust, induced by the superior at- 
tractiveness of the currency offered by the silver men, and adopted 
after the promulgation of that scheme. The notes of the Silver 
Scheme were drawn payable to Isaac Winslow, and were signed by 
the Directors. They ran for fifteen years, and were then redeem- 
able at the rate of twenty shillings per ounce for silver. Mean- 
time the Directors promised to receive them in all trade and 
business as follows : — 

In 1741, an ounce of silver at the rate of 28s. 4d. 
« 1742, " " " " 27s. 9d. 

" 1743, « " " « 27s. 2d., 

and so on, with an annual reduction of seven pence in the rate of 
silver till it reached twenty shillings in 1755, the date at which the 
notes were redeemable. Issued at the current rate of silver, the 
sliding scale of appreciation which they contained was the equiva- 
lent of a low rate of interest. There was one feature connected 
with them which does not appear on the face of the notes. The 
Directors agreed among themselves to exchange the silver bills at 
any time for common current notes, on the basis of the scale of ap- 
preciation given in the notes, and at a later date so amended the 
article of their Scheme containing this agreement that any possessor 
of silver bills could enforce it by legal process. 

It will be observed that the proposed limit to the loans of the 
Land Bank was £150,000 in lawful money. Each twenty-shilling 

1 March 18*, [1710.]. The Comp* for Merely notes redeem 1 p. silver [in] 25 
yrs., carrying '-\ per cent interest, meet, signed, and chose their Director at 
Boston. (The Diaries of Benjamin Lynde and of Benjamin Lynde, Jr., Boston, 
1880, p. K»l). 

Although the description is inaccurate, this can only refer to the Silver 


Land Bank note, if rated according to its own terms, in silver at 
6s. Sd. per ounce, was worth more than four times as much as 
the twenty-shilling note of the Silver Scheme, redeemable in silver 
at the rate of 28s. 4d. per ounce. The £120,000 of silver notes to 
be emitted would therefore represent in lawful money on the day 
of their issue less than one fifth of the proposed issue of the Land 

One hundred and six Boston merchants, headed by Edward 
Hutchinson, subscribed the articles of the Silver Scheme. Their 
combined subscriptions exceeded the amount proposed to be issued, 
and were cut down to keep within the limits of the proposed plan. 
When the Scheme was matured, they also applied to the General 
Court for its approval and sanction. 

The lines of the fight were now squarely drawn, and a committee 
of the General Court was appointed 18 March, 1740, to " investi- 
gate the several projections for emitting notes." This committee 
reported adversely to the Land Bank, but recommended that the 
Silver Scheme be referred to the next session. The Council 
favored the recommendation of the committee, and it would have 
been adopted but for the action in the House, where it was voted 
to refer both schemes to the May session, both companies meantime 
to be prohibited from issuing notes. The Council concurred in this, 
and on the fourth of April the Governor issued his proclamation 
forbidding the projectors of both schemes to issue notes or to pro- 
ceed further until the May session of the General Assembly. This 
session opened 28 May, at which date the restrictions imposed by 
the order of the General Court expired by limitation, and no ob- 
stacle stood in the way of the consummation of either project, 
provided the promoters chose to proceed without the sanction of 
the General Court. 

The situation of affairs at this time was the same as at the last 
session. The Governor and Council opposed the Land Bank, and 
favored the Silver Scheme. The House favored the Land Bank, 
but could not consistently oppose the Silver Scheme. Both propo- 
sitions were laid before the House 4 June, and both were laid upon 
the table. On the sixth the House took the Land Bank scheme 
from the table and heard arguments in its favor. On the same day 
a petition to the Governor and Council and House of Representa- 
tives, headed by Benjamin Gerrish, and signed by a number of infru- 


ential Boston merchants, setting forth the pernicious tendency of 
the Land Bank, the bills of which from their nature were of no 
determinate value, and praying the assembly in its great wisdom, 
justice, and goodness to discountenance and suppress so great a 
mischief, was presented and read in the House. Further considera- 
tion of the Land Bank was then postponed to 18 June. 

The Council, realizing that the House of Representatives was 
proceeding in an independent manner in the consideration of the 
question at issue, and that its action would be friendly to the Land 
Bank, voted, 12 June, to appoint a joint committee to which both 
schemes should be referred. The House concurred, and the mem- 
bers of the joint committee were named. Notwithstanding this 
action on the part of the House, no progress was possible in this 
committee, as the members of the committee appointed by the 
House refused to meet with those appointed by the Council. 

On the fifteenth, several citizens of Ipswich presented a petition 
to the General Court headed by the name of John Choate, in which 
they argued in favor of the Land Bank, and prayed that it might 
be patronized, encouraged, and assisted. 

The inaction of the joint committee to which the two schemes 
had been referred, through its incapacity to hold meetings, deprived 
each side of the fruits of a complete victory. No concerted action 
could be secured by the Council, but independent action by the 
House was prevented so long as it should continue to recognize the 
reference to the joint committee. On the whole, the gain was on 
the side of the Council, as inaction on the part of the House was 
one of the things that the Board was after. The House, therefore, 
resolved to cut the Gordian knot, and regardless of parliamentary 
rules, to resume consideration of the Land Bank scheme, while 
both propositions were still nominally before the joint committee. 
On the eighteenth of June this action was taken, and on the nine- 
teenth, by a vote of fifty-nine against thirty-seven, the House re- 
solved that the persons concerned in the said scheme should not 
be forbidden to issue bills or notes of hand in pursuance of the 

The merchants of Boston, alarmed at this action of the House, 
procured signatures to a new petition against the Land Bank, 
which they presented at the Council chamber, great numbers of 
them being present on that occasion. 


On the twelfth of July this session ended, and on the seventeenth, 
Governor Belcher issned a proclamation in which he recited the 
various petitions which had been presented to the Council against 
the Land Bank, and cautioned his Majesty's good subjects against 
receiving or passing the notes, saying that they tended to defraud 
men of their substance, and to disturb the peace and good order of 
the people. Notwithstanding this, the promoters of both schemes 
proceeded to organize, and by 1 August the Directors of the Silver 
Scheme began to issue their notes. 

The next session of the Assembly began on the twentieth of 
August, and ended 12 September. On the last clay of the session 
the Governor recommended that an inquiry into the character of the 
two schemes be prosecuted by a committee of the General Court, 
during recess, and that in the mean time the projectors be prohibited 
from proceeding further without leave from the General Court. 
The House refused to appoint such a committee, either with or 
without the prohibition from further proceedings. 

The contest between the Council and the House of Representa- 
tives had attracted public attention, and the effect upon the Land 
Bank had evidently not been to its disadvantage. On the thirtieth 
of July, when the partners met at the house of James Jarvis in 
Roxbury and chose their officers, the names of upwards of eight 
hundred subscribers could be counted on their list. The pro- 
nounced sympathy of the. House, if it had not secured favorable 
action in their behalf, had at any rate left matters in such shape that 
they could proceed with the development of their scheme without 
fear of interference. The fact that six of the leading members of 
the House were Directors in the Land Bank, and that many of the 
members were subscribers, was a guarantee for the future. 

In 1720 Colman had stated in his pamphlet that it would be 
hopeless to undertake such a project without the sanction and sup- 
port of the Government ; yet on the nineteenth of September, 1740, 
the mutual agreements and covenants between the Land Bank sub- 


scribers, by means of which the circulation of the notes among 
themselves was to be secured, were duly executed, and the issue of 
the notes was commenced in the face of the certain opposition of a 
portion of the Government. 

It was obvious that the Governor and Council were powerless to 
check the forward movement of the Land Bank by legislation. The 



number of subscribers when the partners lirst appealed to the 
Assembly had been less than four hundred. When they organized 
they numbered over eight hundred, and indeed they continued to 
increase until there were ultimately about a thousand names upon 
the list. Their influence secured the House, and for the present 
at least would continue to do so. 

The conflict between the friends and foes of the Land Bank took 
possession of the columns of the press. As early as July, an Agree- 
ment was published in which the subscribers pledged each other 
they would neither directly nor indirectly receive or take any bills 
emitted in the scheme commonly called the Land Bank, and cau- 
tioned all those who dealt with them that such was their purpose. 
This document was signed by Peter Faneuil, Charles Apthorp, 
Hugh Hall, and one hundred and forty-five others. At a later date 
a similar agreement was published winch had been circulated in 
Newport, and which had received seventy-four signatures. These 
movements were to some extent offset by the publication of simi- 
lar agreements of an opposite nature ; and the publicity given 
these proceedings led to advertisements by dealers to the effect 
that Land Bank notes would or would not be received in trade. 1 
Individuals whose names had been brought into notice in connection 
with the contest inserted notices in correction of rumors as to their 
opinions or purposes. The wits of the day invoked the aid of ridi- 
cule in fictitious notices, the humor of which was doubtless effective 
at that time. 2 

The thoughts of the opponents of the scheme began in the fall 

1 The following from the News-Letter is a sample of these advertisements : 
The Negro-Man advertised to be sold by me the Subscriber for Bills of the 

Land Bank, will be sold to the highest Bidder, by Inch of Candle, on Tuesday 
next 4 o'clock, at the Sign of the Lamb. Ephraim Baker. 

2 Special references are not necessary on these points. An examination of 
the Xews-Letter for the summer and autumn of 1740 and the early part of 1741 
will reveal numerous instances of the publications alluded to. A sample of the 
humor employed by the wits of the day will be found in the following from the 
Xews-Letter of 25 September, 1740 : — 

"This is to caution my Friends concernd in the said Scheme against loading 
the Contribution Boxes in their several places of Worship with their Bills, for 
if they are free that way, it will assuredly stir up the Clergy of every denomina- 
tion against those who have hitherto (to the admiration of all mankind amongst 
us) been silent about em." 


of 1740 to turn towards Parliament for relief, and steps were taken 
to secure action in that behalf in England. The New England mer- 
chants and traders in London presented a petition to his Majesty 
in Council for redress. This petition was, on the twenty-seventh 
of October, referred to the Lords Commissioners for Trade and 
Plantations. 1 There still remained, however, as a resource in this 
country, the potent influence which the Governor exercised over 
office-holders, and on the fifth of November there was issued the 
first of a series of proclamations to different classes of office-holders 
throughout the Province. In this instance it was addressed " to 
all such persons as hold any Commission under me," and all such 
were warned against signing or giving any countenance or en- 
couragement to the passing of Land Bank notes on pain of being 
removed from office. The next day a similar proclamation was 
specially addressed to the military officers of the Province. 

If Belcher thought that his threat of removal from office would 
dissuade those who held commissions under him from continuing 
their support of the Land Bank, he was mistaken. On the tenth of 
November, William Stoddard, a Justice of the Peace, transmitted 
his resignation of his trust on account of the proclamation of 
5 November. Robert Hale, a Justice of the Peace, resigned the 
same day. Samuel Adams and John Choate, Justices of the Peace, 
also sent in their resignations, in a joint letter, on the same day. 
The influence of these resignations may perhaps be traced in 
Belcher's letters. November thirteenth he writes to Partridge, the 
Province Agent : " Never was so vile a scheme set on foot. Yet 
what is done about it will not be sufficient without an Act of 
Parliament." Again, on the nineteenth, writing to the same cor- 
respondent, he says : " I believe nothing less than an Act of Par- 
liament will put an end to it, the undertakers are so needy and 
violent in the pursuit of it." , 

On the fifth of December, an instrument entitled the Manufactory 
Scheme was laid before the Council. It had been offered by 

1 The report of the Board of Trade to the Privy Council was made 13 No- 
vember. They recommended " prosecutions against all concerned in the said 
Land Bank." The Privy Council, on 19 November, stated that they agreed 
with the Board in their opinion that " the said Land Bank Project may create 
great interruption and confusion in business ; " but referred the question of 
methods of suppression to his Majesty's Attorney and Solicitor-General (News- 
Letter, 29 January, 1741). 


Robert Hale, one of the Directors, for record in the office of the 
Secretary. The Board refused to permit this, alleging that the 
proposition to record it after the Board had publicly expressed 
their opinion of the pernicious tendency of the said Scheme was 
a great indignity offered to the Board. The same day, Samuel 
Adams, William Stoddard, Samuel Watts, Robert Hale, and John 
Choate — all of whom, except Watts, had presented their resig- 
nations as Justices of the Peace — were removed and dismissed 
from their said offices. On the ninth, George Leonard, a Justice 
of the Peace, and one of the Justices of the Inferior Court of 
Common Pleas in the County of Bristol, was dismissed from 
office. On the nineteenth, Joseph Blanchard, a Justice of the 
Peace, was also dismissed from office ; 1 January, 1741, John 
Burleigh, a Justice of the Peace, and 3 January, John Fisher, 
Elkanah Leonard, 1 and Ammi Ruhamah Wise, Justices of the 
Peace, were removed from office for receiving and passing the 
notes commonly called Land Bank and Manufactory Bills, and 
persisting therein. 

Many of the military officers were also recalcitrant. In a letter 
addressed to Colonel John Chandler, nine officers who had taken 
and passed, and who continued to take and pass Land Bank Bills,, 
tendered their resignations, on the twenty-ninth of December. The 
columns of the press contain abundant evidence of the discontent 
occasioned by the Proclamation. 

Open letters were sent to the several Registers of Deeds, in De- 
cember, calling upon them to make a return of the Land Bank 
mortgages. As a further means of influencing military officers, the 
colonels of regiments were instructed to inquire into the conduct 
of the officers subordinate to them. The Justices of the General 
Sessions of the Peace were instructed to use their power, both in 
Court and as individuals, to prevent the circulation of the Land 
Bank Bills. In granting licenses to retailers or common victual- 
lers, they were to take this into consideration, and were to caution 
licensees against passing or receiving the aforesaid bills. A blank 
form of summons was prepared for use by the Council in cases 

1 Hobart, in his Historical Sketch of Abington (p. 166), says: "It is not 
known thai anyone was removed from office in Plymouth County excepting 
Elkanah Leonard, Esq., of Middleborough." 


where they wished to bring before them persons accused of passing 
Land Bank Notes. 

The Registers of Deeds responded to the call of the Council, 
and a complete list of all the subscribers to the Land Bank whose 
loans were secured by real estate was thus brought under their 
scrutiny. Information was also freely offered as to delinquencies 
on the part of individual officers, who were thereupon instructed 
by special letters to explain and desist. 

The inquisitorial nature of these proceedings called forth from 
individuals against whom they were directed responses which dif- 
fered in tone according to the character of the writers and their 
sympathy with the Land Bank, and which were perhaps in some 
instances governed by the importance of the offices held by them. 
Many were cringing and obsequious ; a few were manly and inde- 
pendent ; and there can be detected in some the contempt of the 
writers for the despotic and tyrannical methods of the Council. 
Andrew Burley wrote : — 

" As to the complaint exhibited against me for receiving and passing 
Manufactory Bills since his Excellency's proclamation, I freely acknowl- 
edge I have done and am determined so to do at present." 

Henry Lee of Worcester said : — ■ 

"lam determined to do what I can to encourage it, and think that 
the privilege of an Englishman is my sufficient warrant therefor. . . . 
As I act to my conscience, I regard being punished any way for differ- 
ing in my opinion from the Council to be a civil persecution, and to be 
deprived of my office until I be proved unfaithful in it, or have violated 
the laws of the land, I look on as an invasion of my native rights." 

Lee, who was a Justice of the Peace, was of course removed from 
office. Whatever our views as to the economic character of the 
Land Bank and Manufactory Scheme, we can but agree with him 
that, so long as there was no law against the experiment, it was his 
privilege as an Englishman to encourage it; nor was it anything 
short of civil persecution to punish him for holding a different 
opinion from the Council. The power of the Council under the 
Charter to remove from office was disputed by contemporaneous 
writers ; and Lee was not alone in his opinion that it was an inva- 
sion of his natural rights. Yet the steps of this kind taken by the 


Council in the cases of individual office-holders were insignificant 
in their consequences when compared with an order issued on the 
twenty-seventh of January, 1741, in the following words : — 

Voted, That no person shall be admitted to appear and plead before 
this Board as an attorney and counsellor at law, on any pretence what- 
ever, who shall pass, receive, or give encouragement to the bills called 
Land Bank or Manufactory Bills, but that notice be given hereof in 
the public prints. 

To appreciate to-day the full force of this order, we must recur 
to the Charter of William and Mary, where we find it established 
and ordained, — 

" that the Governor of our said Province or Territory for the time being 
with the Council of Assistants may do, execute, or perform all that is 
necessary for Probate of Wills and granting of administration for, touch- 
ing, or concerning any interest or estate which any person or persons 
shall have within our said Province or Territory." 

Attorneys who differed from the Council on this point were there- 
fore cut off by this order from all probate practice before the Board. 

Meanwhile the Governor, at the close of the January session of 
the Assembly, had in his address to the Court acknowledged the 
zeal and steadiness of the Council in their efforts to suppress the 
Land Bank, and had reproached the House for the countenance 
which it had given to this iniquitous contrivance, a considerable 
number of the members themselves being, as he was told, greatly 
interested in it. He alluded to measures taken here and at home 
for the suppression of the Scheme, measures which he did not 
doubt would soon have the desired effect. In aid of these efforts, 
the Council caused a letter to be prepared to the Lords Commis- 
sioners of Trade Plantations, which on submission to the Board 
was duly approved. 

The combined efforts of the Governor and Council, the Boston 
merchants, and the individuals interested in securing legislation in 
England adverse to the Land Bank were so far fruitful that on the 
twenty-seventh of March, 1741, Francis Wilks, Agent, wrote : — 

44 A bill is just passed the House of Commons to extend the Act 
commonly called the Bubble Act, passed in 1720, to the plantations in 
America, after it had sundry alterations from what was first printed 


which 1 could not have a copy of, and time to consider it before it was 
sent to the Lords. I am satisfied it is the determined resolution of the 
Parliament to dissolve all companies in America who have put forth any 
notes or bills to pass in public, and to prevent any other from doing it 

On the ninth of April the bill referred to by Wilks had its 
third reading in the House of Lords. It still had certain for- 
malities to go through before it would become a law, and some 
weeks would necessarily elapse before knowledge of its passage 
could reach America. Pending its arrival, the Province was des- 
tined to witness scenes which testified to the earnestness with 
which the inhabitants of some of the poorer towns were prepared to 
carry on the battle in behalf of the Land Bank Bills. It must 
be remembered that in some of these towns it had been voted to 
receive these bills in payment of the town rates. The selection of 
town officers and the choice of Representatives had been controlled 
in many instances by the opinions of the candidates upon the Land 
Bank Scheme, and the character of the new House was to show 
that the Land Bankers were still in the ascendant. 1 

At such a time as this, when the popular voice had distinctly 
expressed itself in favor of the Land Bank, the attempts of the 
Governor and Council to suppress the Company led a few lawless 
spirits to counsel resistance. Of this the Governor received warn- 
ing through an affidavit, made 2 May, by Samuel Bates of Wey- 
mouth, before Edward Hutchinson, to the effect that there was, a 
report in that town of a confederacy in the country of about five 
thousand men, whose design it was to come to Boston to know the 
reason why there was not a currency for the Land Bank money. 
Bates further said that a paper had been passed about in Abington 
for that purpose, and that there were rumors of the storage of corn 

1 Middleton unanimously voted, 27 January, 1740-41, to receive Land 
Bank Bills for town rates (News-Letter, 29 January, 1741). Abington passed 
a similar vote 31 March, 1741 (Hobart's Historical Sketch of Abington, 
p. 133). 

It was one of the points submitted to the qualified voters of Dartmouth, 
30 March, 1741 (Suffolk Court Files, cccxliii. 53351. 

The Supremacy of the Land Bank in Salem affairs in 1741 is developed in 
the Diaries of Benjamin Lynde, &c, pp. 104 and 162. The overthrow of the 
advocates of the Bank in 1742 is noted, p. 163. 


in Boston, for shipment for a market. The Governor, on the fourth 
of May, appointed John Quincy to make inquiry into the matter 
with privacy and caution, and if he should find that there was need 
of action to call upon Mr. Justice Lincoln for aid in suppressing 
this riotous and disorderly proceeding. 

Apparently the investigation revealed the fact that there was 
some foundation for the information lodged by Bates. Affidavits 
were procured showing that there had been some attempts made to 
obtain the written engagement of a large number of persons in the 
towns of Hingham, Weymouth, Stoughton, Abington, Plymouth, and 
Bridgewater, for a simultaneous rising on the nineteenth of May. 
Notices had been posted at meeting-houses, vague in import, and 
indicating some secret understanding. Precisely what was intended 
is not clear, but from certain veiled threats it may be concluded 
that the conspirators wished to compel persons having corn, and 
especially the proprietors of a large amount supposed to be stored 
in Boston, to sell their corn for Land Bank Bills. The evidence 
appears to have been sufficient to justify the Council in voting that 
they had information of a combination to force the currency of 
Land Bank Bills, and to order, on the fourteenth of May, the issue of 
a warrant for the arrest of a number of persons who were alleged to 

"have been concerned in a design and combination with a number of 
evil-minded persons to come into the town of Boston in a tumultuous 
manner tending to the disturbance and disquiet of the government and 
affright and terror of his Majesty's good subjects." 

The premature disclosure of the attempt and the prompt measures 
for its suppression prevented any outbreak. The only significance 
of the conspiracy lies in its testimony to the widespread influence 
of the Land Bank. 

It is a curious fact that simultaneously with this attempt to en- 
force by violence the circulation of the Land Bank Bills, several 
schemes were under consideration in different parts of the Province 
for the organization of local banks of similar character. From 
Scituate a gentleman wrote, in April, — 

" a number of us in this and the neighboring towns are designing the 
Bame thing and propose the same sum [£50,000], and as some wealthy 
men encourage our proceeding, by promising to be concerned, I doubt 
not it will be completed in a months time." 


About the same time it was rumored that a bank was to be formed 
in Middlesex County, which was expected to profit by the mistakes 
of the Land Bank. In Essex County, a bank was organized and a 
petition in its behalf was presented to the General Court. This 
bank actually prepared for circulation notes of small denominations. 
They were dated at Ipswich, 1 May, 1741, and were payable to the 
order of James Eveleth, one third at the end of every fifth year, in 
produce or manufactures. "Will it not be for the interest of all 
the Counties to follow this laudable example ? " said a querist ; 
"and if all these notes obtain circulation who can complain for 
want of paper money ? " x 

On the twenty-seventh of May, immediately following the issue 
of the warrant for the arrest of the conspirators, a new Assembly 
met, and Samuel Watts, a Director of the Land Bank and one of the 
Justices of the Peace whom the Council had dismissed from office, 
was elected Speaker of the House. The Governor disapproved this 
choice, whereupon the House proceeded to elect William Fairfield, 
an abettor of the Scheme, and this election met with approval. 

The Council and the House then proceeded to the choice of 
Councillors. The names of thirteen of the newly elected Council- 
lors were rejected by the Governor on the ground that they were 
directly interested in or were abettors of the Land Bank. The 
evidence which these elections furnished the Governor, being con- 
clusive as to the temper of the House upon the important question 
in which he took so much interest, he dissolved the House the next 
day for that reason, and writs for a new election were issued, 
returnable 8 July. 

On that day the new House met, and proceeded to organize by 
the election of John Choate as Speaker. Choate, it will be remem- 
bered, headed the Ipswich petition in favor of the Land Bank which 
was presented in 1740, and had been dismissed by the Council 
from his office of Justice of the Peace after he had tendered his 
resignation. It is not probable that there could have been any ex- 
pectation on the part of the Representatives that this choice would 
meet with Belcher's approval. It is almost certain that the bit of 
bravado in which they indulged by electing Choate met with the 
fate which was anticipated when the Governor promptly refused 
his approval, and that the act was taken merely to show him that 

1 See News-Letter, 16 April and 21 May, 1741. 


there had been no change in popular opinion. Choate haying been 
rejected, the House then chose John Hobson, Esq., Speaker, a friend 
of the Land Bank, but not a subscriber. On the thirty-first of 
July, the General Court proceeded under the general powers in the 
Charter to the election of* civil officers and amongst others chose 
Samuel Watts and Robert Hale to be two of the Collectors of Excise. 
Both were Directors in the Land Bank. The Governor had two 
months before refused his approval of the choice by the House of 
Watts as Speaker. Hale was the man who had offered to file the 
Articles of Association of the Land Bank in the office of the Secre- 
tary of the Province, which offer the Council had denominated a 
great indignity to the Board. The records do not disclose when the 
Act passed by Parliament for the purpose of suppressing the Land 
Bank reached this Province ; but it is quite certain that this took 
place before the events which we are now considering. 1 Up to this 
time no steps had been taken by the Directors of the Land Bank 
which indicated a purpose on their part to recognize the Act of 
Parliament. Nevertheless the Governor submitted to the House, 
and distasteful as the step must have been, approved the choice of 
these two men as Collectors of Excise. 

It is essential that we should pause at this stage of the narrative 
to consider the nature of the Act which had been passed by Parlia- 
ment, and the condition in which the projectors of the Land Bank 
and Silver Scheme found themselves under the operation of that 

The Act of the 6th of George I., chapter 18, spoken of by Wilks, 
the Province Agent, as the " Bubble Act," was introduced in Par- 
liament during the excitement connected with the celebrated South 
Sea Company. It had according to its terms a twofold purpose : 
first, the creation of two corporations for the transaction of cer- 
tain classes of insurance ; and second, the creation of a monopoly 

1 [1741, May] 23d, Saturday . . . the Land Bank, and all other Private 
Banks are likely to be blank't by Act of Parliament. The Government frowns 
on them, our principal establishment (The Diaries of Benjamin Iyynde, &c, 
p. 109). The News-Letter, under the following dates, furnishes evidence of 
knowledge of the progress of the Bill : — 

30 April. Tt was stated in a London letter that the Bill was passing. 

28 May. There was a notice of the arrival of the Bill which had passed both 

1G July. An extract from the Act was published. 


of this business for these companies and (simultaneously, it would 
seem) a monopoly of the stock market for existing corporations. 
The first purpose was accomplished in the ordinary way ; the sec- 
ond, by enacting that the transacting of business by any joint-stock 
company having transferable shares, or the raising of any such 
stock, or the taking of subscriptions therefor, or transferring 
shares therein, or doing anything in furtherance of any such under- 
taking without special authority by statute, would be unlawful 
after 24 June, 1720. All transactions by any such company were 
declared to be void, and any business done by it would be a public 
nuisance, for which the offenders were to be punished according to 
the Nuisance Act. Such offenders would further incur the penal- 
alties of premunire, and were liable for treble damages to any 
merchant suffering harm in his trade through them. 

The statute, the passage of which in the House of Commons 
was reported by Wilis, was the 14th George II., chapter 37, 
and was entitled " An Act for restraining and preventing several 
unwarrantable schemes and undertakings in his Majesty's Colonies 
and Plantations in America." It began by reciting in the preamble 
the passage of the 6th George I., chapter 18, and then proceeded to 
describe the Land Bank at length, with a brief allusion to other 

The assertions embodied in this preamble are to the effect that, — 

. . . " persons have presumed to publish in America a scheme for supply- 
ing a pretended want of a medium in trade by setting up a bank on land 
security, the stock of such bank to be raised by public subscriptions for 
large sums of money, whereof small sums were from time to time to be 
paid in by the particular subscribers, and to be managed by Directors, 
Treasurer, and other Officers, and dividends to be made as therein men- 
tioned ; and the said company of subscribers were to promise to receive 
the bills which they should issue, for and as so much lawful money as 
should be therein respectively mentioned in all payments, trade and busi- 
ness ; and after the expiration of twenty years to pay the possessor the 
value thereof in manufactures." 

It then goes on to say that sundry other schemes, societies, part- 
nerships, or companies have been set on foot in America for the 
raising of public stocks or banks, and unlawfully issuing large 
quantities of notes or bills, contrary to the true intent and mean- 


ing of the said Act. Following this description of the, Land 
Bank and reference to the Silver Scheme comes a statement to 
the effect that doubts had arisen whether the Act of Gth George L, 
chapter 18, could be executed in America, since all proceedings 
under it were appointed to be heard and determined either at West- 
minster, Edinburgh, or Dublin ; so that the said Act in its original 
shape was powerless to suppress violations of its terms which might 
occur in America. For the purpose of removing these doubts it 
was enacted that the said Act did, does, and shall extend to the 
Colonies in America. All things prohibited in the 6th George I., 
chapter 18, and all the undertakings, attempts, &c, before men- 
tioned were declared to be illegal and void. All offenders against 
either of the two Acts were declared to be liable to the penalties of 
the Public Nuisance Act, and they further incurred the pains and 
penalties of the Statute of Provision and Premunire. Any person 
who might suffer injury tlirough any of the proceedings declared to 
be illegal in the Act was empowered to bring suit against the com- 
pany causing the injury or against any subscriber to the same, in any 
court in any of his Majesty's Dominions, Colonies, or Plantations in 
America, and judgment, if recovered, should be given for treble 
damages. Any possessor of the notes issued by these companies 
was authorized to bring action against the company, or against any 
person who within six years had been or who might thereafter be 
connected with the undertaking. Eveiy such person was declared 
to be personally liable for the face of the notes and interest from 
date of issue, and the possessor was entitled to immediate judgment, 
even if the note by its terms was not yet due. The penalty of treble 
damages could be avoided by those interested in these schemes if 
they should pay all demands made upon them under this Act, and 
should abandon the schemes entirely on or before 29 September, 

The passage of this Act sounded the knell of the Land Bank. 
It is true that the Company was not a joint stock company, nor did 
it have transferable interests ; therefore it would be difficult to say 
how it came within the scope of the Bubble Act. The assertion 
made in the preamble of the Act of 1741 to the effect that the stock 
of the Bank had been raised "by public subscriptions for large 
sums of money, whereof small sums were from time to time to be 
paid in " was absolutely false. The annual instalments which the 


subscribers agreed to pay were to be applied in liquidation of loans 
which they were to have from the Company, and were not payments 
on account of stock subscriptions. The pretence that the Bubble 
Act originally applied to the Colonies was more than absurd, it was 
wicked ; and the language of the preamble of the Act of 1741 practi- 
cally recognizes that fact. It was perfidious on the part of those 
who drafted that preamble to so describe the Land Bank as to cause 
members of Parliament to believe that it came within the terms of 
the Bubble Act. Not only was there no reason why the projectors 
of the Land Bank should, at the time when they organized, have 
suspected that they were violating any of the statutes of the realm, 
but there was then on record a Report of the Board of Trade made 
to a committee of the Privy Council in which the opinion of the 
Board was given that schemes of this sort were permissible in the 
Colonies. More than that, the Attorney-General himself had filed 
an opinion which might have been quoted to show that what was 
then being done had been pronounced to be legal by the highest 
counsel in the realm. The importance of these two documents in 
this connection is obvious. I therefore submit a statement concern- 
ing their origin and contents, of sufficient detail to show their 

In April, 1735, the Assembly of the Province of Massachusetts 
Bay passed an Act restraining the circulation of the New Hamp- 
shire Merchants' Notes emitted the preceding year. An attempt 
was made to secure the disallowance, by the Privy Council, of this 
Act, and the matter was referred to a committee of the Privy 
Council which called upon the Board of Trade for information; 
whereupon the Board of Trade, on 17 March, 1736, reported to 
the committee that the New Hampshire bills in question were issued 
to supply a want of money, by private men of good estate who had 
entered into an association for that purpose, and that the bills had 
no compulsory circulation, being left to stand or fall according to 
the credit of the signers. 1 Under these circumstances the opinion 
of the Board of Trade was, " It would therefore in our opinion be a 
great hardship to set a public mark of discredit upon the persons 
engaged in this undertaking." 

On the tenth of November, 1735, Willes, the Attorney-General, 

1 Province Laws, ii. 747. 


in a communication to the Right Honorable the Lords Commis- 
sioners for Trade and Plantations, used the following language i 1 — 

" In obedience to your Lordships' commands signified by Mr. Popple, 
I have considered the scheme which you was pleased to send me for 
erecting a sort of a Bank at Boston, in the Massachusetts Bay and can 
see no objection thereto in point of law." 

The contracts and undertakings of the Land Bank Company 
were therefore at the time of their execution legal and proper, so 
far as the subscribers themselves, the Attorney-General of his 
Majesty, or the Board of Trade knew. They were, however, by this 
Act rendered void ab initio. 

Thus through the extension to the Colonies of an Act which by 
its original terms could not have been there enforced, and which 
by any strict interpretation of language would not have applied to 
the Land Bank, a body of law-abiding citizens, who had engaged in 
a scheme which they believed would alleviate a great public need, 
were by legislation made subject to the statute of Provision and 
Premunire, the penalties of which were forfeiture of estate and 
imprisonment. The Act under which this was accomplished not 
only impaired the obligation of existing contracts ; it was not only 
retroactive, it was ex post facto. The affairs of the Company were 
by its passage thrown into chaotic confusion. Its securities were 
annihilated, and the persons who had participated in it were indi- 
vidually at the mercy of evil-disposed persons who might punish 
their enemies by collecting quantities of Land Bank Bills making 
demand for payment and then insisting upon the application of the 
penalties of the statute. 

The attitude of the House of Representatives at the opening of 

1 In the Fifth Report of the English Historical Manuscripts Commission, 
Appendix, page 229, the following is said to be among the Shelburne Papers, 
under date of 10 November, 1735: "Report of the Attorney-General to the 
Lords of Trade on the Scheme of erecting a Land Bank in Massachusetts." 
The quotation in the text is taken from a manuscript copy of a paper in the 
Public Record Office, Board of Trade, New England, 26, B1 136. Mr. B. F. 
Stevens, who procured this copy for me, has also secured from Lord Edmond 
Fitzmaurice a note to the effect that the above copy is identical with the docu- 
ment in the Shelburne Papers which was calendared in the Report of the 
Historical Manuscripts Commission as an opinion on a scheme for erecting a 
Land Bank. 


the July session indicates very clearly that the Land Bank party 
had not at that time made up their minds to submit. Indeed it 
may be doubted if they would quietly have done so if Belcher had 
remained at the head of the Government. 

A contemporary writer describes the situation when Shirley took 
charge of affairs as follows : — 

"As to the temper of the people at that time the Land Bank Party, 
which was very numerous throughout the Province, was irritated and 
inflamed to such a degree that they seemed ripe for tumult and disorder ; 
they had persuaded themselves that the Act of Parliament could not be 
carried into execution, and they had even bid defiance to the Govern- 
ment by their threats." " Nor was the temper of the House of Repre- 
sentatives in a much better frame than that of the populace, two thirds 
of the members at least being either partners or abettors of the Land 
Bank Scheme, from whom a general opposition to all the measures of 
Government necessary at that time for his Majesty's service and the 
public welfare of the Province seemed in their present disposition to be 
much feared." x 

It will depend somewhat on the judgment of the individual 
whether Shirley's advent to power will be considered to have been 
for the advantage of the Province or not. He found a people ripe 
for rebellion. Parliament had placed in the hands of his predecessor 
an instrument of oppression which could have been so applied that 
resistance would have been inevitable. The situation demanded 
conciliation and wise administrative ability. Belcher was incapable 
of dealing with the question in the proper spirit, and was totally 
inadequate for the emergency. Had he remained in power the first 
collision with Great Britain would probably have occurred in 1741. 
Shirley was, however, a widely different man. He was intelligent, 
cultivated, and thoroughly understood the people with whom he was 
brought in contact, and the difficulties against which they were 
struggling. The methods adopted by Belcher served, according to 
Shirley " only to exasperate the people and beget a malignant 
spirit." His evident sympathy with the unfortunate situation of 
the individual subscribers to the Land Bank could not prevent him 
from insisting that the legislative steps which were thereafter taken 

1 An Account of the Rise, Progress, and Consequences of the two late 
Schemes, &c, pp. 41, 42. For full title of this pamphlet see note on p. 2, ante. 


towards winding up that scheme should be in accordance with the 
general terms of the Act which compelled this step, but it led him 
to urge the Board of Trade to let such legislation stand where it 
was quite evident that it was evasive of the strict application of 
that Act. His commission was published 14 August. It was 
important that some steps should be taken towards the abandon- 
ment of the scheme and the redemption of outstanding bills prior 
to 29 September, if the right to a judgment for treble damages 
was not to be a permanent enjoyment of the possessors of the 
bills. It can not well be doubted that it was largely due to the 
change in Governors that the convocation of the Company at Con- 
cord on the first of September became possible, at which meeting 
a committee was appointed " to examine the Directors' and Treas- 
urer's accounts and the Company's trading stock." At an ad- 
journed meeting held at Milton, 22 September, this committee 
reported, and the next day, — - 

" a Committee was chosen who were impowered to attend and assist the 
Directors in consuming the bills as paid in by the partners or otherwise 
drawn into the treasury, and that they, in behalf of the partners, should 
audit and settle the Accounts of Trade with the Directors or Factors of 
the partners, in order to their receiving or paying what might be gained 
or lost in the trade, to be concluded and shut up as soon as possible, and 
that they should see the plates on which the Bills were struck be forth- 
with destroyed." 

This vote is said to have been obtained with difficulty, and to 
have been carried by a bare majority, many being desirous to stand 
out and bid defiance to Parliament. 

On 28 September, in order that the record might be complete as 
to their voluntary withdrawal from the further prosecution of the 
scheme before the limit of time set by the Act of 1741, the Directors 
entered the following declaration, couched in the language of the 
statute, on the Company's books : — • 

We, the subscribers, having been concerned in the Manufactory 
Scheme lately erected in Boston on Land Security, which by the part- 
ners is voted to be dissolved, do hereby publicly declare that from this 
time forward we do desist from and give up and relinquish, and wholly 
forbear to act further therein, or directly or indirectly to carry on the 


Operations in connection with the Silver Scheme had already been 
suspended. Although the Act under which the two organizations 
were thus abruptly brought to an end made void and illegal all the 
contracts and agreements into which both Companies had entered, 
still the situation of those who had issued the silver notes was far 
less perilous than was that of the promulgators of the Land Bank 
Scheme. These notes had been divided among the Directors, all 
men of good standing in the community, and by them distributed 
among friends who were united by a common purpose, and were 
actuated by the belief that the steps they were taking were in the 
nature of self-defence. The consideration of their mortgages was 
expressed in ounces of coined silver, sterling alloy. Payments 
were to be made in the same or in standard gold. The obligations 
ran in favor of nine Boston merchants, 1 whose names were duly 
recited as payees in the instruments, but who were not described as 
Directors of any organization. There was, in other words, nothing 
on the face of these papers which would of itself compel a court to 
recognize them as connected with an illegal company. Traces are 
to be found of litigation arising from the facilities furnished pos- 
sessors of the notes, under the Act of Parliament, to annoy indi- 
vidual partners ; but these are insignificant compared with the 
record of the other Company. 

On the other hand, the Land Bank mortgages were issued in 
consideration of so many pounds in bills of credit called " Manu- 
factory Bills." The receipt of them was acknowledged to be from 
nine gentlemen, who were described as " Directors of the Manufac- 
tory Company (so-called)." 2 Their payment was provided for " in 
Manufactory Bills as aforesaid, or in Merchantable Hemp, Flax, 
etc.," at such prices as the Directors should judge they would pass 
for in lawful money. These instruments were, therefore, unmis- 
takably connected with the Land Bank Company. The patrons of 

1 Edward Hutchinson, Samuel Welles, James Bowdoin, Samuel Sewall, 
Hugh Hall, Joshua Winslow, Edmund Quincy, Thomas Oxnard, James Bouti- 
neau. This list is from a mortgage. There is a return in the Archives (cii. 216) 
in which the name of Andrew Oliver appears in place of Samuel Sewall, while 
a copy of the note given in the New England Historical and Genealogical Regis- 
ter, 1860, xiv. 264, has appended to it ten names, those of Sewall and Oliver 
being both included. 

2 Robert Auchmuty, William Stoddard, Samuel Adams, Peter Chardon, 
Samuel Watts, John Choate, Thomas Cheever, George Leonard, Robert Hale. 



the Land Bank were scattered through the Province. The majority 
of them were able to meet the obligations which they had assumed, 
but the margin of their capacity to respond beyond this was narrow. 
Knowledge of the character of the Act for closing the Companies 
Led some to transfer their property. The straightening of the lines 
between the Province and adjacent Colonies threw the residences 
of a number of the promoters outside the Province. Against 
subscribers thus situated, proceedings under subsequent Provincial 
legislation became ineffective. It was necessary to provide for the 
redemption of outstanding bills ; for the expenses incurred by 
the Company, and for certain losses which had been incurred in 
trade. Each solvent subscriber was primarily responsible for his 
loan, and in addition for his proportion of losses incurred in the 
prosecution of the scheme in accordance with the Articles of Agree- 
ment. The question of the proper distribution of the losses in 
trade was a source of perplexity, and caused much discussion. 
After the adjustment of such questions as these, there still re- 
mained the delinquencies arising from the insolvents, the fugitives, 
and the dishonest. 

It is not my purpose to attempt to folloAV in detail the subse- 
quent legislation upon this complicated subject. We have traced 
the fortunes of the Land Bank from its origin to its compulsory 
closure. The legislation which then took place was with a view to 
protect the public in the first instance, and to prevent as far as was 
possible the honest partners from being imposed upon by the delin- 
quents. For two years no legislative steps were taken to alleviate 
the situation. During this period the Attorney-General, under in- 
structions from the Council, prosecuted a few of the delinquents. 
The situation of the unfortunate subscribers who had complied 
with the law was harassing in the extreme. Forty-seven thousand 
two hundred and eighty-two pounds two shillings and ten pence 
in notes had been issued. About thirty-two thousand five hundred 
pounds of them were brought in with reasonable promptness after 
the vote of dissolution, and voluntary provision was made by 
about six hundred of the subscribers for their proportion of the 

Some of those who were still delinquent were stimulated by a 
proclamation of the Governor in 1742 to contribute their proportion 
toward adjusting their several loans, and others were intimidated 


by the subsequent appointment of a committee by the General 
Court for the purpose of seeing what could be done to the delin- 
quent partners. 

The fact that a subscriber had paid in his proportionate share 
merely relieved him from the penalty of treble damages. He might 
still be the victim of any possessor of the bills who chose to sue 
him. Nor could the Directors enforce the collection of dues to the 
Company since all contracts were rendered void by the Act of 
Parliament. Under these circumstances the subscribers, who had 
complied as far as was possible with the Act of Parliament, peti- 
tioned for relief, and in 1743 an Act was passed by the General 
Court appointing a Commission, into whose hands the affairs of the 
Company were placed. The Commissioners could collect debts and 
levy assessments ; and the estates of subscribers were held for such 
assessments as if they had been attached. The Commissioners 
were also empowered to execute mortgages on the property of sub- 
scribers in place of those originally given the Company. Thus 
through the aid of a commission all the void obligations of the 
Company were practically revived, and power was given to renew 
the securities. The Act of Parliament was to that extent rendered 
of no effect. 1160339 

So far as the subscribers themselves were concerned there re- 
mained unpaid of their obligations to the Company only £2318 8s. 3d. 
when the affairs of the Company were turned over to the Commis- 
sion. This amount was due from eighty-three delinquents, of 
whom forty-six had paid a part of their dues, and thirty-seven were 
totally delinquent. 

The Commission levied three assessments, — one against the total 
delinquents, one against the partial delinquents, and subsequently 
a third against all subscribers. As regards the results accomplished 
by these assessments one of the Commissioners afterward reported 
that proceedings under this Act "tended rather to increase than 
diminish the debt of the Company of Partners." In this connection 
it will be remembered that the outstanding bills all drew interest 
from September 1740, under the provisions of the Act of Parlia- 
ment, — an important feature in these protracted proceedings. 

In 1747 matters were still further complicated by the destruction 
by fire of the papers of the Commission, including all evidence of 
payment of assessments. 


In order to expedite the closing of this tedious affair, — a process 
which up to this time had apparently operated in inverse order, — 
new powers were given the Commission in January, 1749, and a 
new- assessment was ordered. The published lists of the former 
assessments were declared to be evidence of the amounts due the 
Land Bank, and the subscribers were put to the proof of payments 
which they might have made. Collections could be made by war- 
rants of distress, without suit. 

An assessment made in pursuance of this order failed to receive 
the approval of the General Court. If it had been permitted to 
stand, the whole matter would have been speedly disposed of, but 
misfortune followed the unlucky participants in the affair, and the 
recalcitrants were powerful enough to block the wheels of the Com- 
missioners. Thus they practically remained for ten years there- 
after, notwithstanding occasional legislation for the purpose of 
bringing matters to a close. Curiously enough, in one of these 
Acts it is provided that attested copies of the record of the original 
mortgages in the registries of deeds may be used in suits against 
Partners, thus entirely ignoring the effects upon these contracts of 
the Act of Parliament. 1 During this period much trouble was 
experienced in securing service of the warrants of distress. In 
some parts of the Province the officers retained them for years in 
their hands and then returned them not served. 

In the spring of 1759, the Commission was reorganized. The 
new Commission levied two assessments, the first being upon those 
partners whom the Commissioners judged of ability to pay. The 
greater part of this first assessment was collected, and the money 
was applied, so far as was necessary, for the redemption of the bills 
then outstanding. In order to refund Partners who had paid more 
than their just proportion, the second assessment was levied upon 
the subscribers whose names were omitted in the previous list. 
The enforcement of this last assessment was met with successful 

In 1760 a lottery was authorized in aid of the unfortunate sub- 
scribers to the Land Bank. It hung fire for some time and required 
more legislation and the passage of more resolutions to enable the 
Commissioners to secure any benefit from it, but eventually the net 
sum of £556 15s. 6d. was realized. 

1 Province Laws, iii. 803. 


The accounts of the two Commissions were called in and 
audited, and a third Commission was appointed 20 March, 1767. 
With the passage of this Act, the familiar title " Land Bank " dis- 
appears from the Index of the Province Laws, so far as the registry 
of Acts is therein preserved. Nor is there any record in the 
Archives after this date of any conclusion reached upon the subject. 

There were reports of committees both on the accounts of the 
Commissioners and on the relations of the Directors to the Part- 
ners. Action was contemplated to enforce an assessment upon 
the surviving Directors, and the estates of those who were deceased, 
of XI 740 7s. 3<i., said to be due the Partners from the Directors. 
Objection was made to the jurisdiction of the Court, but an order 
was passed to bring in a Bill assessing the Directors the above sum. 
Objection was then raised that a final settlement had been made 
with a committee of the General Court in 1751. This question 
was discussed, and on 3 March, 1768, the hearing was adjourned to 
the first Tuesday of the next May session, and there, so far as the 
record shows, the matter dropped. 

I have said nothing in detail of the litigation consequent upon 
the Parliamentary and Provincial legislation, nor have I space to 
do so now. The Court files are full of special blanks printed to 
meet the exigencies of the occasion. There are special forms of 
writs for possessors of notes, others for the Commissioners as plain- 
tiffs, and there are special blanks for Warrants of Distress to be 
issued by the first and second Commissions. Hundreds of these 
were used in the various proceedings, the numbers being greatly 
increased in consequence of the fire in 1747. 

Two things may tend to cloud our judgments in determining the 
influence of these proceedings upon subsequent political events. 
First, we can have no sympathy with the Scheme. It could have 
had no other effect than to add to the embarrassments under which 
the Province was then laboring. It was so inherently weak that 
before the first payment of interest became due on the mortgages, 
the managers procured the execution of an additional agreement 
that not over one half in amount of the payments to be made 
should be in Manufactory Bills. 1 It was so vicious in principle that 

1 How extensively this Agreement was executed by the subscribers I have 
no means of knowing. The only copy that I have seen is in possession of our 
associate Mr. William Gordon Weld. A description of it will be found in this 
volume of our Transactions, pp. 47-49, post. 


it is difficult not to accept its suppression as a thing which ought 
to have been accomplished on any terms. In the second place, the 
powers delegated by the General Court to the Commissioners, after 
it was found that the first Act for the suppression of the Land 
Bank was only effective so far as honest men were concerned and 
could be easily evaded by others, were arbitrary in the extreme, 
and a review of the history of the affair is apt to leave tins the lead- 
ing impression in the mind, thereby tending to throw into the back- 
ground the iniquitous character of the Parliamentary legislation on 
the subject. 

The fact that there was strong hostility to the Scheme on the 
part of capitalists and intelligent business men undoubtedly had 
its effect in preventing any proper unanimity of feeling upon the 
methods of parliamentary suppression, yet the following of the 
Land Bank was so great that these methods had a far reaching 
influence in preparing the people of Massachusetts for subsequent 
resistance to parliamentary interference in their affairs. Hutchin- 
son assumed that these proceedings furnished evidence of Parlia- 
mentary supremacy, but Samuel Adams, in 1773, called attention 
to the fact that the Act passed by the legislature of the Province 
militated against the Act of Parliament, and claimed that the 
acquiescence of the people was simply to what they conceived 
might operate for public good, while they did not consider them- 
selves bound by such portions of the Act of Parliament as would 
work harm even to individuals. 1 

1 Answer of the House of Representatives, 2 March, 1773, to the Speech of 
the Governor [Hutchinson] of 16 February, in " Speeches of the Governors of 
Massachusetts from 1765 to 1775, and the Answers of the House of Represen- 
tatives to the Same, . . . Boston, 1818 " (generally cited as Bradford's State 
Tapers), p. 801. 

Hutchinson, in his History (ii. 355), says : " It was said the Act of George I. 
when it passed had no relation to America ; but another Act twenty years after 
pave it force, even from the passing it, which it never could have had without. 
This was said to be an instance of the transcendent power of Parliament." 
This transcendent power of Parliament, which was partially set aside by the 
General Court in 1743, which was disputed by Samuel Adams in 1773, and 
which was submitted to the arbitrament of the sword in the Revolution, was 
claimed by the counsel for the defendant in Phillips v. Blatchford (137 Mass.) 
to still have force in Massachusetts. His brief recites the passage of the 
Ads of George T. and 14 George IT., quotes from the State Constitution the 
clause which continues in force existing laws until repealed, and concludes: 


I think that the recital of what has gone before mnst have pre- 
pared us to admit that John Adams was correct when he said, 
" The Act to destroy the Land Bank Scheme raised a greater fer- 
ment in this Province than the Stamp Act did." His statement 
that this ferment " was appeased only by passing Province laws 
directly in opposition to" the Act of Parliament, 1 brings before 
us anew the fact that the General Court shielded the honest sub- 
scribers, as far as possible, at the expense of the Act of Parliament. 
Thus we see that the preposterous legislation of Parliament for the 
purpose of suppressing the Land Bank, led to its direct evasion by 
the legislature of the Province and brought the question of Parlia- 
mentary supremacy under discussion. 

As we look over the list of Directors we see the name of Samuel 
Adams, and in the later reports of committees the estate of 

" This law, established by the express command of the Sovereign, and, on 
the change of the government, confirmed by the new Sovereign, is the law 

1 Novanglus and Massachusettensis ; or Political Essays published in the years 
1774 and 1775, on the principal points of controversy between Great Britain and 
her Colonies, ... p. 39. 

We seek in vain for any recognition by historians of the political importance 
of these events, at all proportionate to the claim advanced in the text of this paper. 
Hildreth gives a brief sketch of the Land Bank, and says that the Act extend- 
ing the Bubble Act to the Colonies "was denounced in Massachusetts as an 
interference with the Provincial Charter, and in South Carolina as a violation 
of provincial rights." He also refers to the fact that " earnest efforts on behalf 
of these unfortunate speculators, of whom his father was one, first introduced 
into politics Samuel Adams, afterward so celebrated." Palfrey says "the pro- 
ject became a prominent political question," evidently referring, however, to 
local contemporary politics. After stating that " some of the best men of the 
Province " appealed to Parliament for relief, he sums up the effect of the appli- 
cation of the Bubble Act to the colonies in the epigrammatic statement, "The 
Land Bank was caught in its own devices." As a rule the references of his- 
torians to these events are brief and inappreciative. Hildreth alone seems to 
have been upon the verge of a complete understanding of their political value. 
It may be asked why this is so. Our associate, Mr. Abner C. Goodell, Jr., has 
made a suggestion to me upon this point which furnishes an answer to this 
question. He says it is because Hutchinson, who is the accepted authority for 
this period of our history, was opposed to the scheme not only as an economist 
but as a politician. It was not possible for him to interpret these events with- 
out prejudice, nor could those who relied upon his judgment arrive at a true 
measure of their political influence. 


Samuel Adams figures as a delinquent. It is known that the 
harassing proceedings taken against the estate of the father were a 
source of annoyance and trouble to the son. Who shall measure 
their effect upon the mind of the future inspirer of the Committees 
of Correspondence, the indefatigable and persistent leader in the 
revolutionary movement ? 

" It is supposed," wrote one of the pamphleteers of the day, " that 
there will be about one thousand subscribers, who in their station 
of life must have an intercourse of business or dealing interwoven 
with ten thousand more." " Many towns," wrote another, " take 
the notes in trade, besides paying their Town and Ministerial rates 
with it, at least in part." Yet Parliament was too impatient to 
wait a few months for this popular experiment to collapse through 
its own weakness, too anxious for hostile legislation to care for its 
reputation for consistency and justice, and in its haste and im- 
patience sought to crush the Land Bank out of existence by means 
which then aroused the indignation of this multitude of interested 
persons, and which cannot fail to create the same feelings in the 
mind of the disinterested reader to-day. 

A discussion, in which several of the members partici- 
pated, followed the reading of Mr. Davis's paper. 



A Stated Meeting of the Society was held in the Hall 
of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 
on Wednesday, 20 February, 1895, at three o'clock in the 
afternoon, the President in the chair. 

After the Minutes of the last Meeting had been read and 
approved, the Corresponding Secretary read the following 

letter : — 

50 West Forty-seventh Street, New York, 
Tuesday, 4 February, 1895. 

My dear Mr. Davis, — Your very kind letter, together with the 
official announcement of my election as an Honorary Member of The 
Colonial Society of Massachusetts, and an advance copy of the Annual 
Report and By-laws of the Society, were duly received, and nothing but 
the desperate illness of one of the members of my family has prevented 
my acknowledging them more promptly. 

I do most highly appreciate the honor done me by your Society in 
thus placing me on the list of its Honorary Members in such distin- 
guished company, and I accept it with the warmest thanks. The 
objects of the Society as set forth in its Constitution are most interest- 
ing, and I shall take great pleasure as opportunity offers in attending its 

Will you please to convey to your associates who have done me this 
signal honor my grateful appreciation of their kindness. 

Yours very truly, 

Joseph H. Choate. 
Andrew McFarland Davis, Esq., 

Corresponding Secretary. 

The Eev. Dr. Joseph H. Allen spoke at length upon 
the religious situation in the American Colonies before the 
Ee volution. As this subject was treated without notes, 
except for occasional quotations from documents, only the 
following brief outline can be given here: — 


Governor Hutchinson, in summing up the situation in 1774, 
says (III. 455) that "the people had been persuaded that their 
religion as well as their liberties was in danger," and adds that 
" this was what would cause them to go all lengths and to sur- 
mount the greatest difficulties." This language implies not only 
that religious passions embittered the political conflict, but that 
two rival parties were then contending for supremacy. A State 
Church of some kind was assumed to be an essential part of the 
body politic ; but here there were two claimants contending for 
public support and official authority, — the Congregational body, 
established as part of the political system at the first founding of 
the Massachusetts Colony; and the Episcopal, which for nearly 
ninety years had existed here side by side with it. 

Strictly speaking, this rivalry existed only in New England: 
since in the more southerly Colonies, where Episcopacy had been 
established from the beginning, — notably in Virginia, — it was in 
full harmony with the patriotic spirit of the day ; while here — in 
Boston especially — it was identified with a small official party, 
mostly Loyalists. According to Hutchinson, the patriotic lead- 
ers were all (or nearly all) Congregationalists, with their clergy, 
who in general aimed openly at independence ; while the smaller 
religious bodies — Baptists, Methodists, Presbyterians, Quakers — 
might be reckoned neutral. In numbers, the Congregationalists 
counted not far from six hundred churches, while the Episcopa- 
lians did not probably much exceed two hundred churches in all, 
of which we may reckon about fifty in New England. The ex- 
treme jealousy and dread felt towards so small a body remain to 
be accounted for by circumstances in the earlier colonial history. 
The speaker's remarks were mostly a rapid review of these circum- 
stances, which will here be briefly traced in chronological outline. 

Episcopacy was established in Virginia with the founding of the 
Colony in 1G07 ; and in 1632 the English law of penalties against 
dissent was adopted. Virginia, however, was regarded by many 
of its own clergy as a sort of penal colony, from which they were 
chiefly anxious to escape; and the Church there had in its early 
days neither dignity nor authority. . 

In the Massachusetts Colony, Congregational church member- 
si iip was made essential to the political franchise in 1631, but 
this position was constantly threatened from the first. In 1634, an 


attempt of Archbishop Laud to crush the religious independence 
of the Colony was foiled. In 1644, a deputation was sent to the 
English Parliament to protest against a similar attempt of the 
Presbyterian party to compel a state religion under the forms of 
the " Solemn League and Covenant." In 1648, the Congrega- 
tional Order was defined by the "Cambridge Platform," and 
became the ecclesiastical constitution of Massachusetts, main- 
tained at public cost till 1833, — suffering some modification 
meanwhile. The government of the Restoration, in 1662, re- 
quired the abolition of laws against Episcopalians and Quakers, 
also of the limiting of political rights by church membership. In 
England, at the same period, the laws of conformity as against 
Dissent, with the Test and Corporation Acts, were made so cruel 
that more than eight thousand Non-conformists are said to have 
perished in the prisons of Charles L, increasing the anger and 
terror felt against the Anglican Establishment here. The attempt 
of Sir Matthew Hale to investigate these atrocities, in 1668, was 
overruled by the influence of the High Church party. Suspicion 
was further roused by an attempt made in Virginia, in 1672, for 
the establishment of an American bishopric ; and though, in the 
scheme adopted (which was not carried out), New England was 
expressly exempted from its jurisdiction till it should be otherwise 
ordained, yet the apprehension continually increased that con- 
formity with the Church of England, to be enforced by law, was 
an object never lost sight of in the government policy, as a means 
of strengthening the political tie that bound the Colonies to the 
mother country. It was regarded as a part of the same scheme 
when, in 1684 (the last year of Charles), the Colonial Charter was 
declared void by the Court of Chancery ; when, in 1686, the first 
Episcopal church was founded in Boston under official support, 
and was called " the Royal Chapel " ; and when, a few months 
later, Sir Edmund Andros took forcible possession of the Old 
South Meeting-house for the celebration of the Episcopal service. 
The apprehension was at its height when, in April, 1688, Increase 
Mather, the most distinguished representative of Congregation- 
alism, escaped under cover of the night 1 to England, and there, 
in a three years' stay, making friends of the government of Wil- 
liam III., was able " to rescue for Massachusetts the larger part 
i See Sewall's Diary, i. 209, 210. 


of her civil liberties, and to put her churches and her schools 
beyond the danger of forcible conversion to Episcopal uses by the 
agents of the English government." 2 

But in 1692, against the opposition of Catholic and Quaker, 
Episcopacy was made an establishment in Maryland ; and from the 
mission of Rev. Thomas Bray, who went to inspect its churches in 
1700, there issued a religious foundation, which had a most im- 
portant bearing in the later history, — the Society for the Propaga- 
tion of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, chartered in 1701. This was 
apparently meant for the simple work of evangelizing a country 
wide, new, poor, and largely destitute of civilizing agencies ; but 
it soon proved to be, or Avas charged with being, a propaganda of 
Episcopacy, with a view to its getting a footing as a political estab- 
lishment. It was charged with employing more of its missionaries 
in New England alone than in all the Colonies south of New York 
put together ; and these, instead of being sent to remote or desti- 
tute localities, found homes in the best settled and best taught 
region of the western continent, — Boston, Cambridge, Newbury, 
Ipswich, Salem, Braintree, Portsmouth, and Marblehead being the 
most important "missionary" stations. In 1722, the President 
of Yale College and six of its officers joined the Episcopal ranks, 
and several of them afterwards became active Episcopalian propa- 
gandists. In 1725, Massachusetts was asserted to be w T ithin the 
episcopal charge of the Bishop of London. The name " Dissenters " 
began to be applied, opprobriously, to members of the older colonial 
churches other than Episcopal. King's Chapel had its " Governor's 
Pew," where the King's representative sat in a sort of official state 
among other officers and favorites of royalty. Reaction from the 
" Great Awakening " of 1735 led in one direction to a sudden 
expansion of religious liberalism, and in the other to a craving for 
the decencies and order of ecclesiastical formalism. The hostility 
and alarm thus stirred in the established Congregational body 
broke out, in 1747, in what is known as the " Hobart Controversy " 
in Connecticut, beginning with the protest against the guilt of 
schism incurred in the Episcopal seceders from New England ortho- 
doxy, made in an ordination sermon at Stamford by Rev. Noah 
Hobart Dr. Cutler, of Christ Church, Boston, the former Presi- 

1 Williston Walker, Ph.D., of the Hartford Theological Seminary, in Papers 
of the American Society of Church History for 1893, pp. 73, 74. 


dent of Yale, was reported to have said that there is " ordinarily 
no salvation out of the communion of the Episcopal Church " ; 
and Ave may take it as a retort personal when Mr. Hobart says, in 
his " Serious Address," that " probably there are many immortal 
souls now in hell, who, had you contentedly remained in our com- 
munion, might have spent an happy eternity in heaven" ! x 

It was in this year, 1747, that Jonathan May hew, the boldest 
and most radical preacher of his day, was settled over the West 
Church in Boston. To omit what might here be told of his noble 
ancestry, — his descent from Thomas Mayhew, who settled at fifty 
in Martha's Vineyard, and lived there close upon forty years as 
governor, teacher, civilizer, and missionary of the native tribes; 2 
or of his strikingly independent and eloquent career as preacher, — 
we come to the latter days of his ministry, and the outbreak of the 
" Mayhew Controversy," in 1763. This controversy brought to the 
front the sharpest prejudices on both sides. One of the mission- 
aries of the " Society for the Propagation of the Gospel " had just 
died at Braintree, and a newspaper comment following his death 
had charged, virtually, that he was sent there under false repre- 
sentations, and that his being commissioned at all was in perver- 
sion of a missionary trust-fund. This called to the defence of 
the Society the Rev. East Apthorp, of Cambridge, son of a Boston 
merchant (Charles Apthorp), a gentleman and a scholar, English 
bred, himself a missionary in Cambridge, and first Rector of Christ 
Church. Jonathan Mayhew was loudly and at once summoned by 
the general voice to reply ; and for the two years following there 
ensued a battle of thick pamphlets, three of them — far the heavi- 
est and loudest guns of the battle — being by Mayhew himself. 
Each party, no doubt, thought itself to have the better in the war 
of words ; and each — to turn again to the testimony of Governor 
Hutchinson — found itself all the more obstinate and acrimonious 
in the political dispute that followed ten years later, when, in this 
part of the country at least, the line of division in that dispute 

1 A very full account of this Controversy will be found in the Rev. Henry 
W. Foote's Annals of King's Chapel, chap. xvii. (ii. 241-280), on Episcopacy 
and the Mayhew Controversy. 

2 The story of Mayhew's ancestry and their civilizing work is given on pages 
252, 253, of the chapter above referred to. In this connection the speaker took 
occasion to refer to the Treasurer of our Society, Mr. Henry H. Edes, as a lineal 
descendant and worthy representative of the heroic Mayhew family. 


followed so closely the line of difference between the two rival 

A long discussion followed, in which several of the mem- 
bers participated. 

Professor William W. Goodwin, referring to the use by 
Dr. Allen of the word " Dissenter " as indicating dissent 
from the opinions of the Episcopalian Church, called 
attention to the Mary Saltonstall Scholarship at Harvard, 
which provides that it shall be preferably given to a 
" Dissenter," there evidently meaning a member of the 
Congregational Church. 

Mr. William G. Weld stated that the recent communi- 
cation to the Society of a paper on the Land Bank of 1740 
had recalled to his mind that he had in his possession, 
among his family papers, two documents connected with 
this subject. He had caused copies of these to be made, 
and he now submitted them to the Society. 

The first of these documents is a Land Bank Mortgage, 1 exe- 
cuted 9 September, 1740, by Joseph Weld, gentleman, and Martha 
Weld, his wife. The consideration is said to be " One Hundred 
Pounds in Bills of Credit, called Manufactory Bills," and is ac- 
knowledged to have been received from Robert Auchmuty of 
Roxbury, Esq., Samuel Adams, and William Stoddard of Boston, 
Esqrs., (then follow six other names,) " Directors of the Manufac- 
tory Company (so called), by the said Joseph Weld for his share as 
a Partner in said Company." The mortgaged premises are situ- 
ated in Roxbury. 

The condition of the mortgage is as follows : — 

" PROVIDED nevertheless that if the said Joseph and Martha Weld 
their Heirs, Executors or Administrators shall at the Expiration of 
every Year from this Date annually, during the space of Twenty Years, 
pay to the said Robert Auchmuty, Samuel Adams, William Stoddard, 
Peter Chardon, Samuel Watts, George Leonard, Robert Hale, John 
Choate and Thomas Cheever, Five in the Hundred of the Principal Sum 

1 The mortgage is recorded with Suffolk Deeds, Ix. 103. 


now received, and Three per cent. Interest for the Principal enjoyed, 
in Manufactory Bills as aforesaid, or in Merchantable Hemp, Flax, 
Cordage, Bar-Iron, Cast-Iron, Linens, Copper, Tann'd Leather, Flax- 
seed, Bees-Wax, Bayberry-Wax, Sail-Cloth, Canvas, Nails, Tallow, 
Lumber, viz : Shingles, Staves, Hoops, white Pine Boards, white Oak 
Plank, white Oak Boards, and Ship Timber ; Barrel-Beef, Barrel Pork, 
Oil, Whale Bone, or Cord Wood, of the Manufactures or Produce of the 
Province aforesaid, or Logwood at such Prices as the Directors shall 
judge they pass for in Lawful Money at Six Shillings and eight Pence 
per ounce, with one per cent, advance thereon, at the respective Times of 
payment, then this Deed to be void : But if any one Payment above 
Conditioned for shall be behind in the Whole, or in Part, or unper- 
formed, by the space of one month after the Time above set for it, then 
to remain in full Force and Virtue." 

In addition to the acknowledgment of the receipt of the con- 
sideration of the mortgage, which is embodied therein according 
to the customary phraseology of such instruments, there is 
attached to the mortgage a special receipt signed by Joseph Weld, 
" for the sum of One Hundred Pounds, being the full considera- 
tion mentioned in the foregoing instrument." 

In submitting the copy of the second document Mr. Weld stated 
that, although the original was executed upon a printed form, he 
had never met with any other copy of this supplementary agree- 
ment modifying the terms of payment of the mortgage. The 
principal points in this instrument appear to be : First, an agree- 
ment on the part of the Mortgagor that he will pay one half at 
least of his annual payments in manufactures ; Second, a consent 
on the part of Weld that the Directors may, at their discretion, let 
out such bills — meaning probably the bills loaned under the 
mortgage — as they may have at any time on hand, such loans to 
be repaid in manufactures only; and Third, a consent to the 
Directors holding such bills in their treasury during the last two 
years of the mortgage. 

The following is a copy of this document : — 

THIS INDENTURE made the Nineteenth day of March Anno 
Domini One Thousand Seven Hundred and Forty and in the fourteenth 
year of the Reign of our Sovereign Lord GEORGE the Second, by the 
Grace of God of Great Britain, France and Ireland, King, Defender of 
the Faith, &c. By and Between Joseph Weld of Roxbury in the 




County of Suffolk in the Province of the Massachusetts Bay in New 
England, Gentleman on the one Part, and Robert Auchmuty, of Rox- 
bury, Esq; Samuel Adams and "William Stoddard, of Boston, Esqrs ; 
Peter Chardon of Boston, Merchant, Samuel Watts, of Chelsea, Esq ; 
all in the County of Suffolk, George Leonard, of Norton in the County 
of Bristol, Esq; Robert Hale of Beverly, Esq; John Choate of Ips- 
wich, Esq; and Thomas Cheever of Lynn, Gentleman, all in the County 
of Essex, Directors of the Manufactory Company in Boston in the 
County of Suffolk aforesaid, of the other Part, WITNESSETH, That 
Whereas by certain Indentures between them made, bearing Date the 
Ninth of September, 1740, the said Joseph Weld hath undertaken for 
One hundred Pounds of the said Manufactory Companies Bills, accord- 
ing to the tenour of those Indentures, but upon more mature Consider- 
ation, for the Increase and Promoting of the Manufactures therein 
mentioned, and better securing the value of the said Manufactory Bills, 
which to us seem the most proper Means to Relieve the Misfortune and 
Poverty of this Country, the said Joseph Weld for himself, his Heirs, 
Executors and Administrators doth hereby further Covenant and Agree 
with the Directors aforesaid, and each of them severally, their and each 
of their Heirs, Executors and Administrators, that he the said Joseph 
Weld, his Heirs, Executors and Administrators, will annually Pay one 
half at least of each of the Annual Payments in those Indentures men- 
tioned, of Five in the Hundred of the Principal Sum by him Received, 
with Three per cent. Interest for the Principal enjoyed in the manufac- 
tures in the said Indentures mentioned. 

Also that it shall be lawful for the Directors of the said Company at 
their Discretion from Time to Time to Let out such Bills as shall be in 
their Treasury, on good Security, to be Repaid both Principal and 
Interest in the aforesaid Manufactures only. 

And lastly, that it shall be lawful for the Directors of said Company, 
at their Discretion, to continue in the Treasury and not let out any of 
the Bills that shall happen to be in the Treasury, at any Time in the 
Two last of those Twenty Years mentioned in said Indentures, but to 
keep them there till the Expiration of the said last Two Years. 

IN WITNESS of all which, the Parties aforenamed hereunto inter- 
changeably put their Hands and Seals at Boston aforesaid, the Day and 
Year first above written. 

Signed, Sealed, and Delivered 
In Presence of 
Walter Hamilton, 
S. Auchmuty. 

Joseph Weld. [Seal.] 


Mr. Andrew McFarland Davis spoke as follows : — 

The Society is under obligation to Mr. Weld for submitting 
these copies of instruments, which illustrate the important sub- 
ject which I undertook to explain at the January meeting. The 
peculiar character of the payments called for by the terms of the 
mortgage which has just been laid before us is well worthy 
of your attention, and it is a very significant fact that even be- 
fore the date of the first payment of interest the Directors should 
find it necessary to have this supplemental instrument executed, 
whereby they sought to prevent payments under the mortgages 
being made in their own bills. It is obvious from this that they 
found difficulty in keeping their bills afloat; and it shows, I 
think, that the so-called Land Bank could not long have been 
maintained even if the government had not undertaken to sup- 
press it. 

I quite agree with Mr. Weld as to the value and rarity of the 
second of these instruments. I have examined many volumes in 
the Archives at the State House and of the Suffolk Files at the 
Court House in search of information concerning the Land Bank, 
and this document in the possession of Mr. Weld, a copy of which 
is now before the Society, is the only one of the kind I have 

At the January meeting I stated that men of property who had 
been unfortunate enough to become partners in the Land-Bank 
were, after the intervention of Parliament, harassed by holders 
of the bills. Each and every partner became liable for the re- 
demption of such bills as might be presented to him for the pur- 
pose, and those who had available means were selected as victims. 
It was not essential as a preliminary for the demand upon such 
partner that any effort should have been made to collect the value 
of the face of the bills from the Company. There are numerous 
suits on the Suffolk Files against individual partners, and, amongst 
others, the ancestor of our associate, Captain Joseph Weld, who 
executed the mortgage of which we have a copy now before us, 
figures as a defendant. The following note 1 was addressed to 
him: — 

1 Suffolk Court Files, vol. ccclix. no. 56470. 



Boston, 20th Decern., 1742. 
Sr, — Hereby I give you notice as you are a partner of the late 
Manufactory Company that I am possessor of Fifty eight Manufactory 
Bills (so called) of the denomination of seventeen shillings and sixpence 
each and sixteen more of said Bills of Twenty shillings each and as 
your partners do not redeem 'em of me I hereby demand payment of 
you on the same in lawfull money with lawfull Interest from 9th 
Septein 1 " 1740 immediately. 

Your compliance will oblige 

Sr Yr humble Servant 

Jacob Griggs 
of Boston in ye County of Suffo Merchant. 
To Capt. Joseph Weld 
at Roxbury in the County of Suffolk. 

This demand was served upon Weld by the sheriff, and return 
of service was duly made. At the April Term of the Inferiour 
Court of Common Pleas, 1 Griggs sued Weld and recovered judg- 
ment. 2 From this judgment Weld appealed to the next term of 
the Superiour Court of Judicature for Suffolk County, and entered 
with sureties into recognizance to prosecute the appeal. 

The record does not state explicitly whether this appeal was 
prosecuted to final judgment, but this was probably the case, for 
in 1744 the bills on which the suit was founded were handed over 
to the Commissioners to be burned. The receipt of the Commis- 
sioners is in the following language : — 

Boston, April 10th, 1744. 
"Received of Benjamin Pemberton, Esq 1 " Clerk of the Superiour Court 
of Judicature &c the sum of Sixty five pounds fifteen shillings Manufac- 
tory Bills lodged in said Court by Mr. Jacob Griggs at his suit against 
Mr Joseph Weld & for which said Griggs recovered judgment & is 
since satisfied. 

15 20/ 15 

58 17/6 50 15 

65 {5 John Jeffries ) 

Sam 1 Danforth j Commisl ' s 

The judgment referred to in the receipt was probably an affirma- 
tion of the judgment of the lower court; but if such judgment 
was entered, the entry was not preserved. 

1 Suffolk Files, vol. ccclxii. no. 56960. 2 Ibid. vol. ccclxix. no. 58108. 


The surrender of the notes to the Commissioners brings before 
us the explanation of their scarcity. Personally, I have never seen 
one of them, and do not know if any are in existence. It would 
be very remarkable, however, if all of them were destroyed. 

Mr. John Noble read the following paper : — 


To these Courts successively, the predecessors of the Supreme 
Judicial Court, belonged the exclusive jurisdiction over all the 
graver crimes. 

The Court of Assistants seems to have been as old as the Colony 
itself, and to have exercised full judicial functions from the very 

The statements that have been made that the Court was 
established in 1639, that " the power of establishing Courts of 
justice was assumed by the colonists, without any grant of 
authority in their Charter," and that the Assistants "derived 
their judicial authority from legislative enactment," seem to be 
inaccurate, and to have been made on insufficient authority. They 
may have arisen from confusion of dates, from confounding dif- 
ferent courts, and from hasty inferences. 

At the outset, about all the functions of government, executive, 
legislative, and judicial, appear to have been exercised by the 
Magistrates, sitting as a Court of Assistants. This appears from 
the records, beginning with that of the first Court of Assistants, 
held 23 August, 1630, and from that time on. The action of the 
General Court was in the early days insignificant. The first record 
of its sitting is under the date of 19 October, 1630, and down to 
May, 1634, it met only four times thereafter, according to the 
records, while more than thirty Courts of Assistants were held. 

Down to 1660, there is no separate or specific law to be found 
creating or establishing the Court of Assistants, or defining its 
powers or the extent of its jurisdiction. During that period of 
thirty years it had exercised all the powers and extended its juris- 
diction over every matter falling within the province of that Court 


specified in the Laws of 1660 ; and from the trial of Walter Palmer 
for homicide before a jury of twelve men, 9 November, 1630, it 
had continuously tried cases of " life, member, and banishment," 
and a few of "divorce." Its jurisdiction is indicated also by the 
laws establishing or defining the inferior courts. The act of 
3 March, 1635-6, provides for "Foure courts kept euy quarter," 
at Ipswich, Salem, New Town, and Boston, to "trie all civill 
causes, whereof the debt or damage shall not exceede X 1 , & all 
criminall causes not concerneing life, member, or banishm 1 ," with 
a right of "appeale to the nexte greate Quarter Court." The act 
of 9 September, 1639, establishes " Speciall Courts," in consequence 
of the increase of "the businesses of the ordinary Court of Assist- 
ants," to be held quarterly by "such of the Magistrate as shall 
reside in or near to Boston, or any 5, 4, or 3 of them, the Gov- 
erno r or Deputie to bee one," with powers substantially the same 
as the County Courts last mentioned. There were also the 
Strangers' Court and other small Courts established at different 
times. Though the Magistrates sat in the County Courts and 
others, these are not to be confounded, as they have sometimes 
been, with the regular Courts of Assistants. 

The acts relating to the Court of Assistants seem to be declara- 
tory, recognizing its existence and the extent of its jurisdiction, 
and merely regulating its terms. 

The act of 3 March, 1635-6, provides that " There shalbe foure 
greate Quarter Courts kept yearely att Boston, by the Goun r , & 
the rest of the Magistrates," fixing the terms. 

By the act of 17 October, 1649, the number of terms was re- 
duced from four to two ; and this last act is embodied in the 
Laws of 1660, — which in the Chapter on Courts fixes the terms 
and states the powers of the Court of Assistants, as follows : — 

"For the better administration of justice, & easing of the Country 
of unnecessary charges and travaile, — It is Ordered by this Court and the 
Authority thereof, That there be two Courts of Assistants yearely kept 
at Boston by the Governour, Deputie Governour, and the rest of the 
Magistrates, on the first Tuesday of the first month, and on the first 
Tuesday of the seventh Month, to heare and determine all and onely 
actions of appeale from inferiour Courts ; all Causes of divorce, all 
Capita] and Criminal causes, extending to life, member or banishment. 
And that justice be not deferred, nor the Country needlessly charged, 


It shall be lawful for the Governour, or in his absence the Deputie 
Governour (as they shall judge necessary) , to call a Court of Assistants 
for the tryal of any Malefactour in Capital Causes." 

The exercise of these powers and this jurisdiction from the 
beginning of the Colony uninterruptedly appears from the records 
of the Court itself so far as extant, and from numerous papers 
found among the Early Suffolk Files now in process of arrange- 
ment. It is also repeatedly recognized in the records of the 
General Court. 

That separation of the government into different branches, — 
executive, legislative, and judicial, — which resulted in the Court 
of Assistants becoming a purely judicial body, took place gradually. 

The legislative function of that Court may be said to have been 
surrendered by agreement amongst the Magistrates and Freemen 
at the General Court in May, 1634; but the executive function 
continued to be exercised by it, with more or less frequency, for 
some years. In fact, it was as late as 1650 that the Magistrates 
sitting as a Council first began to have a separate record. 

There was nothing for a long time that could properly be called 
a Criminal Code, except so far as that part of the " Body of Lib- 
erties," so called, of 1641, which related to criminal matters, and 
which was founded upon the Word of God as evidenced in the 
Scriptures, could be so designated. 

The Colonists brought with them, of course, that habit of legal 
practice in matters of form and detail which they had acquired as 
Englishmen, and in which some of them had been specially edu- 
cated. There was also the limitation in the Charter that no laws 
should be made repugnant to the laws of England. This limita- 
tion was but little regarded, and seems to have been construed to 
mean simply that no such laws should be passed as would be hostile 
to the government of England, or subversive of those great funda- 
mental principles of English law which were considered to be the 
birthright of every Englishman, — such, for instance, as the right 
to trial by jury. Beyond these limitations, so construed, and aside 
from those methods of procedure which they naturally adopted by 
force of English habit of mind, the Court of Assistants recognized 
no other source of law than such as they could find in the Holy 
Scriptures, as interpreted by themselves, — or as embodied in legis- 



lative enactments of the General Court, sometimes with the advice 
of the Elders of the churches. 

From time to time, as it appears by the Colonial records, 
committees Avere appointed to make a draught of laws : 6 May, 
1635, "of such lawes as they shall judge needfull for the well 
ordering of this plantacon," — 25 May, 1636, " of lawes agreeable 
to the word of God, w ch may be the Fundamental^ of this Comon- 
wealth," — while " in the meane tyme the Magistrates and their 
associates shall pceede in the Courts to heare & determine all 
causes according to the lawes nowe established, & when there is 
noe lawe, then as neere the la we of God as they can," — and so on 
at different times thereafter. 

Meantime the Magistrates seemed inclined to the policy of 
letting laws " arise pro re nata upon occasions," and " to raise up 
laws by practice and custom." 

Then came the Body of Liberties in 1641, and the Codes of 
1649, 1660, and 1672. The punishments inflicted appear in the 
records of the cases tried by the Court. The penalty imposed upon 
adultery is rather curious in its history. At a trial in the Court of 
Assistants, 6 September, 1631, where the offender is sentenced to 
be " seuerely whipped," " it is ppounded with r adultery . . . shall 
not be punished w th death. Referred to the nexte Court to be 
considered of." 

At the second Court thereafter, 18 October, 1631, it is ordered 
that where committed " with another man's wife, they both shalbe 
punished with death." 

Then at a General Court, 12 March, 1637-8, " The law against 
adultery made by the pticuler Court in October, 1631, is con- 
firmed;" and at a General Court, 7 October, 1640, "The first law 
against adultery, made by the Courte of Assistants @ 1631, is 
declared to bee abrogated ; but the other, made the first m 1637 or 
1638, by the Generall Court, to stand in force." The reason of 
this legislation is perhaps apparent enough without further ex- 
planation, — namely, to make the infliction of capital punishment 
for this offence rest for its validity upon an enactment of the 
General Court, rather than upon an enactment by the Court of 
Assistants. The history of this action as to the punishment 
for adultery is not only curious, but also most important and 


This with many other points will be more largely dealt with in 
the volume of the Records of the Court of Assistants, referred to 
below, in which the history of this Court, its functions and juris- 
diction, will be considered. The list of capital crimes in the Body 
of Liberties is long, — heresy or idolatry, witchcraft, blasphemy, 
murder, poisoning, bestiality, sodomy, adultery, man-stealing, per- 
jury against life, and treason, — and it is lengthened in the Code of 
1672. Certain safeguards are provided as to the trials and execu- 
tion of sentence. Banishment, dismembering, and branding were 
prescribed and inflicted for certain offences. The wearing of a let- 
ter or other badge of ignominy does not seem to be prescribed by 
law, but was a penalty not unfrequently imposed by the courts. 

In the early days of the Province the penalties prescribed by the 
laws were not essentially changed ; the list of capital crimes is 
increased somewhat, branding and dismembering continued, and 
the wearing of a letter prescribed for certain offences ; as in the 
case of adultery, after being set on the gallows and whipped, the 
offenders " shall forever after wear a capital A, of two inches long 
and proportionable bigness, cut out in cloth of a contrary colour to 
their cloaths, and sewed upon their upper garments, on the outside 
of their arm, or on their back, in open view," &c. ; and similarly 
the use of the letter I, in case of incestuous marriages or practices. 
Some of these laws were disallowed, however, by the Privy 

Under the Province, the successor of the Court of Assistants 
was the Superiour Court of Judicature, established by the act of 
25 November, 1692. This act was subsequently disallowed, for 
certain reasons, by the Privy Council, 22 August, 1695, — a dis- 
allowance not known in Boston till 12 July, 1696. 

Various acts subsequently passed were in like manner disallowed, 
until the act of 26 June, 1699, established the Court anew. 

The records of the Superiour Court of Judicature from 1692 to 
the establishment of the Supreme Judicial Court, its successor 
under the Constitution, are full and complete, and in perfect 
preservation among the records of the latter Court in Suffolk 
County. Of the records of the Court of Assistants only the 
second volume, from 1673 to 1692, is extant. It is to be found in 
the same place also in perfect preservation. 


The earlier records, so far as any complete volume is concerned, 
have been missing beyond the memory of man. 

From the first Court held, 23 August, 1630, down to October, 
1641, they are to be found in the Massachusetts Colony Rec- 
ords, and from the last date down to 5 March, 1643-4, in the 
"Barlow Copy," now owned by the Boston Public Library. 1 

Much material has already been collected from various sources, 
mainly from the Court Files of the several Counties of the Com- 
monwealth, which, to a certain extent, will fill this intervening 
gap of thirty years; and I have now in preparation a volume 
which is intended to contain all the Records of this Court, so far 
as they have been recovered or can be reproduced. 2 

Following is a list of cases tried by the Court of Assistants, 
with the punishment imposed by sentence, arranged according to 
the latter : — 


4 Sept., 1632. Richard Hopkins, "for selling peeces & powder & 
shott to the Indeans." To be " seuerely whipt, & branded with a hott 
iron on one of his cheekes." (M. C. R., page 99.) 

" ppounded if this offence should not be punished hereafter by death." 
" Referred to the nexte Courte to be determined." (Legislation, 17 
May, 1637, in M. C. R., page 196.) 

3 Oct., 1632. Nicholas Frost, — " for thefte," &c, " drunkenes and 
fornicacon," — " fined," " seuerely whipt, & branded in the hand with a 
hott iron, & after banished out of this pattent." In case of return, " nee 
shalbe putt to death," &c. (Page 100.) 

Subsequently, 3 Nov., 1635, imprisoned till trial for breach, 1 March, 
1635-6, forfeited his recognizance, 5 April, 1636, bound over " to 
appeare . . . upon sumons." (Pages 155, 164, 172.) 

6 Oct., 1635. Rofite Scarlett, " a knowen theife," " shalbe seuerely 
whipt & branded in the forehead with a T," and his master enjoined to 
send him "out of this jurisdicon." (Page 163.) Subsequently, 28 Oct., 
1636, on " hope of amendment, hee is admited to stay." (Page 183.) 

1 For an account of this volume and a transcript of its unique passages, see 
William II. Whitmore's "A Bibliographical Sketch of the Laws of the Massa- 
chusetts Colony," etc. Boston, 1890. 

2 Mr. Noble, as Clerk of the Supreme Judicial Court for the County of 
Suffolk, is the official custodian of the Suffolk Court Files. 


19 Sept., 1637. William Brumfeild, " for his stealeing, ploting to run 
from his m r , lying, drunkennes & idlenes," " censured to make double 
restitution, to bee branded, & bee seuerely whiped." (Page 203.) 

1681. George Fairfax. " Burglary, stealing, running away from 
his Master," "to be branded in the forehead w th the letter B & be 
seuerely whipt," &c. (Rec. Ct. of A.) 

12 Nov., 1683. Leonard Pomeroy. " Murder," — " found guilty of 
manslaughter." — "to be burnt in the hand & forfeit his Goods & 
chattell," — "y e executioner executed the sentence in y e face of the 
Court." (Ibid.) 

Sept., 1685. Uriah Clements. Burglary, "to be branded with the 
letter B. on y e forehead & have his Right eare cutt of." For a second 
burglary subsequently sentenced "to be branded w th letter B on his 
forehead & have his left eare cutt of." (Ibid.) 


3 Sept., 1633. Ronte Coles. " Fyned X 1 , & enjoyned to stand 
w th a white sheete of pap on his back, wherein a drunkard shalbe 
written in greate ires, & to stand therew th soe longe as the Court thinks 
rueete, for abuseing himselfe shamefully w th drinke, intising Iohn Shot- 
well's wife to incontinency, & other misdemean r ." Had been previously 
fined in 1631 and 1632 for drunkenness. 

4 March, 1633-4, "for drunkenes," "shalbe disfranchised, weare 
about his necke, & soe to hange upon his outward garm* a D, made of 
redd cloath & sett upon white ; to continue this for a yeare, & not to 
leave it of att any tyme when he comes among company, under the 
penalty of xl 8 for the first offence & v 1 the second, & after to be 
punished by the Court as they thinke meete ; also he is to weare the D 
outwards & is enjoyned to appeare at the nexte Geiiall Court, & to 
contynue there till the Court be ended." 

14 May, 1634. " The sentence . . . is nowe reversed, vpon his sub- 
mission and testimony being giuen of his good behav r ." 

4 March, 1634-5. Ordered at a General Ct that he " shall not pay 
more of his Fyne of X 1 , for drunkenes, &c, than hath bene already 
levyed in strong water." (M. C. R., pages 107, 112, 118, 139.) 

5 April, 1636. Wilim Perkins. "Drunkenes & other misdemean er ," 
to " stand att the nexte Genall Court one houre in publique vewe with 
a white sheete of pap on his brest, haveing a greate D made vpon it," &c* 
(Page 172.) 



6 Sept., 1636. Edward Wbodley, "for attempting a rape, swearing 
& breaking into a house," "to be severely wbiped 30 stripes, a yeares 
imprisonment, & kept to hard labo r , w lh course dyot, & to weare a 
collar of yron." (Page 177.) 

A part of sentence subsequently remitted. (Page 193.) 

5 March, 1638-9. John Davies, "for grosse offences in attempting 
lewdness w th divers weomen," " to bee severely whiped " " & to weare 
the letter V. vpon his breast, vpon his vppermost garment, untill the 
Court do discharge him." (Page 248.) 

3 Sept., 1639. "Vpon his good carriage, was discharged from 
wearing the V." (Page 268.) 

Richard Wilson " for stealing," &c, " to bee put fourth to service 
for 3 or 4 yeares, except he can procure X 1 ; also hee is to have a T set 
vpon his vpmost garment." (Page 268.) 

3 Dec, 1639. " Elnor Peirce her husband was bound in 10 £ for her 
good behavio r , & to bring her to stand in the market place the next 
market day w th a paper for her light behavioV 

Quick. Same sentence for same offence. Margaret Hindersam 

the same. (Page 284.) 

1 June, 1641. Davy Hickbourne, " for his grosse misdemeano r & 
foule miscarriage," "to be severely whiped, to weare an iron coller till 
the Co r t please & serve his master," &c. (Page 318.) 

7 Sept., 1641. Thomas Owen " for his adulteros practises" " to be 
sent to the gallos w th a roape about his neck, & to sit upon the lather an 
houre, the roapes end throwen over the gallos, so to return to prison." 

Sara Hales " for her miscarriage " a similar sentence, " & after to bee 
banished." (Page 335.) 

7 March, 1642-3. Sentence for attempted bestiality was " to bee 
carried to place of execution & there to stand with an halter about his 
necke & to bee severely whipped." (Whitmore's Transcript of the 
"Barlow Copy," p. xxxi.) 

7 June, 1642. Thomas Scot & wife, " fornication before marriage," 
"to stand an ho r e vpon 16 th present in the market place, with each of 
them a paper with great letters on their hatts." (Ibid., p. xxxiii.) 

1 Nov., 1654. Edw d Sanders. " Rape, tried in Ct. of Assistants in 
April ; Jury and Magistrates not agreeing in the verdict, case went to 


Gen. Ct. which found him not guilty of death, but deserving a high and 
severe censure ; sentenced to be whipt and henceforth to wear a rope 
about his neck hanging down two feet long, to continue during Court's 
pleasure ; if found over forty rods from his own house without the rope 
to be whipt for each offence." (Gen. Ct., M. C. R.) 

11 March, 1673. Ruth Reed, attempted imposition of illegitimate 
child on her husband. Sentenced, if found in Colony two months after 
date, to stand " in the market place on a stoole for one hower w th a 
paper on hir breast w th ye Inscription," &c. (Rec. Ct. of A.) 

1674. Anne, Negro. " Committed for having a bastard child & 
being under sore suspition of making it awaye," &c. Indictment for 
murder. Verdict, " Guilty of having a Bastard Child & privately 
conveyed it away." " Sentenct to stand on the Gallowes w th a Roape 
fastened about hir Necke to the Gallowes for one hower," "to be tyed 
to & whipt at the Carts Tayle to the prison w th thirty stripes," &c. 

1675. Maurice Brett, indicted for adultery, found " not legally 
Guilty, but Guilty of very filthy carriage," &c. Sentenced to stand on 
the Gallowes " w th a roape about his neck," " whipt at the Carts Tayle," 
&c, and "banished." Mary Gibbs, the co-defendant, same sentence, 
except banishment. 

13 Sept., 1675. Thomas Davis. Adultery. Verdict, " Not Guilty 
legally according to indictment, but found him Guilty of very Suspitious 
Acts leading to Adultery." Similar sentence, except banishment. The 
co-defendant the same. 

1676. Peter Cole and Sarah Bucknam. Same offence, result, and 

1677. Darby Bryan "chose to be tried by the bench," and co- 
respondent, Abigail Johnson, same. Sentenced to stand on the gallows 
" w th a roape about neck" and to be whipped at the cart's tail. 

Ephraim Beamis, " witting and willing trepanning and pandering," &c. 
Similar sentence. 

1683. Joshua Pike and co-respondent Elizabeth Crockett, adultery. 
Same result and sentence. 

1684. Philip Darland and Mary Knights. Same. 


10 Oct., 1G01. Martin Williams, " a stranger," passing counterfeit 
money, " to stand three Several lecture days in Boston in the Pillory, 
one houre each time, after the lecture, w th a Paper signifying his 
crime," &c. 


14 June, 1631. Phillip Ratcliffe " shall be whipped, haue his eares 
cutt of, fyned 40 1 and banished out of y e lymitts of this jurisdiccon, 
for vttering mallitious & scandulous speeches against the goum* & the 
Church of Salem," &c. (M. C. R., page 88.) 

13 May, 1G40. James Luxford, " for his forgery, lying & other 
foule offences," " to bee bound to the whiping poast, till the lecture 
from the first bell, & after the lecture to have his eares cut of ; & so 
bee had liberty to depart out of o r iurisdiction." (M. C. R., p. 295.) 

1G75. Maurice Brett, " f or his contemptuous carriage confronting 
the sentence, [for adultery to wear the rope, be whipped, and banished, 
see supra,"] to stand in the pillory, ... his eare nayled to y e pillory & 
after an hours standing there to be cut of," and also fine and whipping. 

1G79. Peter Lorphelin, " Frenchman," " being Accused for Rash 
Insulting Speeches in the time of the late Conflagration thereby Rendring 
himself Justly suspitious of having a hand therein," was committed, and 
being examined "his chest & writtings " were ordered to be searched, 
and suspicious articles being there found, was sentenced " to stand upon 
the pillory two bowers & then to haue both you r eares cutt off by the 
executioner and to give bond," &c, " w ch sentence was executed 

1684. Joseph Gatchell, Blasphemy, " to stand in pillory, have his 
head and hand put in & have his toung drawne forth out of his mouth, 
& peirct throyh w th a hott iron." " The Marshall General taking neces- 
sary help with him to see y e execution of y e sentence performed." 

1G85. Uriah Clements (supra, under Branding), after that " to have 
his Right eare cutt of," and for a second offence " his left eare," &c. 


4 Dec, 1G38. Dorothy, the wife of John Talbie, "unnatural & 
vntimely death of her daughter," " to bee hanged." (M. C. R., p. 246.) 


10 Dec, 1641. William Hatchet. " Beastuality," " to bee hanged, 
& the Cowe to bee slayne & burnt or buried." (M. C. R., p. 344.) 

5 March, 1643-4. lames Brittaine and Mary Latham. Adultery, 
both " condemned to death." (Barlow, p. xlii.) 

1673. Beniamin Goad. Beastiality. Special Verdict: "If the 
prisoner's confession ag* himself vpon his first apprehention and before 
his trial together with one evidence be sufficient for legal conviction, 
then we find him guilty according to the Indictment ; otherwise not 
guilty of the fact but of a most horrid attempt," &c, " w ch we leave to 
the determination of the Honored Court." Magistrates found him 
"Capitally Guilty." Sentenced to be hung, " w ch was done accord- 
ingly." (Rec. Ct. of A.) 

1674. Tom Indian. Rape. Sentenced to be hung. 

Robert Driver. Murder of his master. Sentence given verbatim, 
and in same form as now used. 
Nicholas Faevo r . Same matter. 

1675. Peter Rodrjego (Dutchman), John Roads, Richard Fowler, 
Peter Grant, Randolph Judson. Piracy. Sentenced to be hung. 

17 Sept. Samuel Guile. Rape, "be hang d till you be dead," &c. 
" W ch was accordingly doun, Oct. 16, 1675." 

21 Sept. Several Indians indicted for " y e murder of those at Nash- 
away." Six found not guilty. Several ordered "to be sent away," 
and one, " Litle Jn° Indian y t came as a messenge 1- from being proved 
to be a murderer of the English in y e Warr .was Condemiid to be 
hanged & was executed accordingly." 

1676. Stephen Goble, Dan 1 Goble, Nath 1 Wilder, and Daniel Hoare. 
Murder of three Indian women and three Indian children. Sentenced 
to be hanged. 

Basto, Negro. Slave, &c. Rape on his master's daughter of three 
years. Sentenced to be hanged. 

1681. Marja, Negro, serv* of John Lambe. Arson. "Pleaded & 
acknowledged herself to be Guilty of y e Fact." Sentence of death ; 
to be burnt at place of execution. See infra. 


Cheffaleer Jack, Negro, servant, &c. Arson. " To be hanged & 
then taken down & burnt to ashes in the fier with Marja Negro.' 1 

William Cheny. Rape on his servant. Sentenced to be hanged. 

" Secretary ordered to issue out warrants to the Marshal General for 
the execution of these three on the next lecture day presently after the 
lecture according to their sentences." 

1685. James Morgan. Murder. Sentenced to death. 

1G89. Hugh Stone. Murder of wife. Sentenced to death. 

3 Jan., 1689-90. Thomas Hawkins. Piracy in Massachusetts Bay 
three leagues from Half Way Rock. 

Thomas Pound, Thomas Johnston, Eleazer Brick. Piracy in Vine- 
yard Sound. 

John Sickterdam, William Dunn, Richard Griffin, Dan 1 Lander, 
W m Warren, Sam 1 Watts, W m Coward, Peleg Heath, Thomas Storey, 
Christopher Knight, — some of them for Piracy and Murder, — all 
sentenced to death. 

1691. Elizabeth Emmerson. Murder of her illegitimate twins. 
Sentenced to death. 


" Ordered that the 3 Adulterers, John Hathaway, Rob r t Allen & 
Margareet Seale, shalbe severely whiped, & banished, never to returne 
againe, vpon paine of deathe." 



1676. Jn° Flynt. Indicted for murder. Verdict of manslaughter. 
Fined 20£ to County, 20£ to the father. 

Peter Bent. Murder. Verdict: "Killing by Chanc Medleiug, by 
Casualty." 10£ to County, 20<£ to widow. 

Sam 1 Hunting. Murder. Verdict of Manslaughter. 20£ to widow, 
5£ to County. 

1680. John Dyer. Murder of an Indian. " Manslaughter." " Sixe 
pounds to widow," " i. e. 20s downe, in or as money — & 20s more for 
live years successively." 


1683. Elizabeth Payne. Murder of her illegitimate child. Found 
" greatly negligent," &c, "to be whipt 30 stripes for her forni- 

James Fuller, " being led by instigation of the divill did wickedly 
call upon or pray to the Divill for helpe, & hath at seueral times had 
familiarity w th him." " Not guilty according to the Indictment," but 
" considering of his wicked & pernicious willfull lying & continuance 
in it till now putting the country to so great a charge." Sentenced 
to fine, 30 stripes, 5£ for charges, and in default of payment " left to 
Treasurer of y e Country to ship him of & dispose of him as he can, not 
exceeding foure yeares." 

William King. Blasphemy. Evidence of madness. 20 stripes given. 

1678. Bethyah Getchell. Adultery. " Not guilty according to 
indictment, . . . but enjoyned to appeare before next County Court," 
&c, "to answer for her notorious lying." 

1676. Walter Gendall. " Endeavoring to betray the inhabitants 
into the hands of the enemy in time of y e Indian War"; to "run the 
Gantelop through the Military Companies in Boston w th a roape about 
his necke, — forfeit all his lands, — and be banished, on penalty of 
perpetual imprisonment if he returne." 

John Watts. Same, and "trading powder to the Indians," — "to 
run the Gautelop," &c, " bond of 100£." 

1680. Thomas Davis and Jn° Eggington. " Convicted of being two 
incorrigible theeves & Robbers," " also for many reiterated Oaths & 
cursings of themselves & others" ; " threatening if loose to burne the 
Towne," &c. Sentenced to 20 stripes, and to be returned to prison ; 
afterward breaking prison, and stealing again, "to restore treble dam- 
ages," &c, and in default, "to be sold & sent to any of the English 
Plantations — & return no more on payne of death." 

SPECIAL COURT, 1686-1687. 

Peleg Heath, — "felonious stealing.," &c, — "pleaded guilty & 
praying the benefitt of Clergie was called to the booke & readding was 
burned in the left hand with y e letter T." 

Richard Hulins, John Stickey, Thomas Waters, William Hawkins, 
Joseph Aramatu, similarly punished. 


Charity Williams, " Stealing goods," " pleaded guilty, praying the 
Benefitt of the Statute of Jacobi in favour of women committing small 
felonies," was burned in left hand with letter T. 

Mercy Windsor similarly punished. 

John Neponet alias Nemasit. Murder. Sentence of death. 

Thomas "Waters, second offence, benefit of clergy not allowed. Sen- 
tence of death. Third offence had sentence as above. 



1692. Vol. I. Records. There are several trials for Witchcraft 
recorded in full,- and of extreme interest. In three of these there is a 
verdict of guilty, and the ominous conclusion: "The Court Ordered 
the Keeper of the Goale to take care of the Prisoner, Acording to 

10 Jany. Sarah Wardwell. (Page 14.) 

11 " Elizabeth Johnson, junior. (Page 18.) 
11 " Mary Post. (Page 21.) 

25 Apr., 1693. Elizabeth Emerson, convicted of Murder in 1691, 
and sentence of death ordered but not pronounced, "brought to the 
Barr" and sentence passed. (Page 50.) 

Grace, a Negro. Murder. Death. (Page 51.) 

Jan., 1693-4. Jacob, an Indian man. Murder. Death. (Page 94.) 

1694. " Zachalenaco, otherwise called Zechariah, an Indian man of 
Kycomocho in the County of Suffolk." Murder. Death. (Page 100.) 

1695. Joseph Hyde, an Indyan. Murder. Death. (Page 149.) 

1696. Susanna Andrews. Murder. Death. (Vol. II. p. 49.) 
John and Esther Andrews, parents of above, " were found guilty of 

death and so pronounced, as accessory," &c. 

1698. Sarah Smith. Murder. Death. (Page 193.) 
Sarah Threeneedles. Murder. Death. (Page 199.) 




1693. Samuel White. Eobbery. " To be branded in the Forehead 
the letter B," treble damages, costs, &c. (Vol. I. p. 73.) 


1693. Nathaniel Blackledge and John Chester. Forgery of Certifi- 
cate. Fined. " Thes Fines were ordered to be received by the Clerk 
to buy seale & book of Record for the Court." (Page 52.) 

1694. Hannah Newell. "Adultry by her owne confession," &c. 
1 'Fifteen stripes Severally to be laid on upon her Naked back at the 
Comon Whipping post." 

Lambert Despar, the co-defendant, " twenty five lashes, . . . and 
that on the next Thursday Immediately after Lecture he stand upon the 
pillory for the space of one full hower with Adultry in Capitall lett rs 
written upon his brest." (Page 129.) 

1696. William Veazey. " A Bill of Indictment was preferred and 
found by the Grand Jury . . . for High Misdemeanour, in open 
Contempt of His Maj ties Royal person and Government here estab- 
lished," &c. 

The case came on for trial 27 April, 1697. He was presented " for 
that the Authority of this Province Assembled in the Great and Gener'all 
Court haveing Ordered & appointed ... a Solemn day of Thanksgiving 
to Almighty God for his Great Mercy in the Discovery of the late 
Hellish plot and Conspiracy to Assasinate his Maj ties Royal person, and 
by the s d Act or Order did Strictly inhibit all Servile Labour upon that 
day: William Veazey ... in open contempt . . . did plow amongst 
hisCorne"; and furthermore questioned the "Setting apart dayes of 
Thanksgiving and Humiliation " ; and also the King's title to the Crown. 
He "pleaded guilty." "Ordered That he pay the Sum of Tenn 
Pounds Fine to the King ; that he be set in the pillory in the Market 
place in Boston tomorrow ab* noon, there to stand by the Space of One 
Howr," &c. (Vol. II. p. 75.) 

1698. Francis Dormer, "having an Information drawn up against 
him" for "false and Scandalous words and expressions touching and 
concerning his Excellency Richard Earle of Bellomont," "pleaded 
guilty" "to this Indictment," and was sentenced to "stand in some 
publick place in this Towne for an howrs space on a fryday at twelve 


o'clock with a paper on his breast Signifying his Crime," &c. (Vol. II. 
p. 202.) 

This dry list lacks, of course, all the attraction of the archaic 
quaintness and the dramatic interest of the full records of the 
cases, and is intended only as a mere skeleton. 

Mr. Henry E. Woods communicated the intelligence 
that there was formed at North Brookfield, on 26 December, 
1894 — 


Its objects, as defined by its By-Laws, are " To unite the citizens of 
those towns which include the ancient Quaboag District in an effort to 
collect and preserve all the historical matter belonging to this same sec- 
tion, to stimulate a local pride in, and a love for, antiquarian research 
by the preservation of relics and the marking of memorable sites within 
the borders of these towns." 

Mr. John Elbridge Hudson, of Boston, was elected a 
Resident Member. 

1 This Society was incorporated 22 March, 1895. 



A Stated Meeting of the Society was held in the Hall 
of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences on 
Wednesday, 20 March, 1895, at three o'clock in the after- 
noon, Dr. Gould in the chair. 

The Records of the February Meeting were read and 

The Corresponding Secretary communicated the following 
letter from our associate, Mr. Charles H. Davis : — 

43 Cedar Street, Worcester, 
March 14, 1895. 
Andrew McF. Davis, Esq., 

Corresponding Secretary. 

Dear Sir, — I do not pretend to know anything about maps, but a 
friend who is in the insurance business has recently called my attention 
to the fact that the maps issued to the insurance companies covering the 
different cities of the Commonwealth, when taken in connection with the 
correction slips, furnish a complete history of the growth and progress 
of these places. 

Each of these maps gives a ground-plan of the portion of the city 
which it represents. It also furnishes the means of determining 
whether the several buildings therein defined in outline are constructed 
of wood, brick, iron, or stone, and gives various other details of con- 
struction, which are of special interest to insurance people, but which 
are also of value to those who care to preserve a record of the changes 
of the place. 

So far as I know, not a single public library, not a single historical 
or antiquarian society, has undertaken to make a complete collection 
of the maps of this character, a collection in which it is evident that 
students of Massachusetts history are greatly interested. I have been 
told that some years ago the Boston Public Library purchased the 
Boston maps and also subscribed for the correction slips, but, so far 
as I can learn, this subscription was not maintained. The effort to 


secure this valuable contribution towards the history of Boston 
apparently died in its birth. 

I have thought it worth my while to call the attention of The Colonial 
Society to this subject. I believe, if our libraries and collectors will 
turn their attention to this field, they will find it not only fallow, but 

Yours very truly, 

Charles H. Davis. 

Mr. Andrew McFarland Davis said that he had devoted some 
thought to the subject of the foregoing letter, and, in co-operation 
with the writer of the same, had gathered some information relative 
to these Insurance Maps. 

The catalogue of these maps, published by the Sanborn-Perris 
Company, contains the names of one hundred and thirty-seven 
cities and towns of Massachusetts. The sheets devoted to Boston 
are comprised in six bound volumes, and include also Cambridge, 
Charlestown, and Jamaica Plain. They are of large folio size, and 
are on a scale of fifty feet to the inch. Brockton, Chelsea, Fall 
River, Haverhill, Lowell, Lynn, New Bedford, Salem, Springfield, 
and Worcester are also furnished in bound volumes, one being 
devoted to each city. 

Mr. Davis exhibited a sample copy of one of the Sanborn-Perris 
maps, showing how, by means of different colors, the materials are 
designated of which the buildings are constructed. The key to 
the map also furnishes the means of interpreting the various marks 
and signs which denote the number of stories of the buildings, 
their relative height, the materials of which their roofs are com- 
posed, and various other details not included in ordinary maps. 

Material changes, caused by the alteration of old buildings or 
the erection of new, of course require recognition in these maps, if 
they are to be of value in determining fire exposures. This is 
effected by the issue of correction slips, covering the portions of 
the maps which are affected by the changes. These are drawn to 
the same scale, and in actual use in an insurance office are pasted 
directly upon the map where they belong, so that the maps are 
kept constantly up to date. These slips of course have no date, 
and, being fastened to the maps, all trace of the chronology of 
the changes which they record is not only lost, but the outline of 
the streets and buildings as they were before the changes is also 


hidden from view. Mr. Davis pointed ont that it would be easy to 
preserve untouched the original map, and to date and file the cor- 
rection slips, thus preserving detailed records of the changes of all 
cities where these maps are in use. 

Mr. Davis also submitted specimens of the insurance surveys, 
known as the Barlow Surveys. These cover individual manufac- 
turing plants in the country and in the suburbs of the cities. 
They show in great detail the structures, their height, the pro- 
visions made for safety against conflagration and much other 
information. The printed matter furnished with each of these 
surveys is generally accompanied by a graphic delineation of the 
buildings composing the plant. Eight hundred of these surveys 
have been made in Massachusetts, and have been published by 
this company. 

The Associated Factory Mutual Insurance Companies are nearly 
all of them Massachusetts or Rhode Island companies. Their 
efforts have been directed towards the improvement of mill con- 
struction and the reduction of fire risks. In pursuance of this 
object, they have caused to be printed carefully prepared inspec- 
tions of the various plants of the members of these companies. 
Mr. Davis stated that he laid the subject before Mr. Edward 
Atkinson, President of the Boston Manufacturers Mutual Fire 
Insurance Company, and was by him presented to Mr. John 
R. Freeman, Chief of the Inspection Department of the Factory 
Mutuals. Through Mr. Freeman's kindly intercession, he was 
able to lay before the Society five copies of their standard plans, 
illustrating the progress of mill construction, showing the old style 
of factory roof, the barn roof, and the modern cotton mill, the old 
style paper mill, and the modern paper mill. A complete set of 
these beautifully executed plans, when combined with a set of the 
Barlow Surveys, would furnish at any given date a tolerably 
complete exhibit of the condition of industrial enterprises in 

In addition to these, Mr. Davis also exhibited a specimen copy 
of the Inspections and Plans of the New England Bureau of United 
Inspections. This is an organization composed of a few of the 
stock insurance companies, and a collection of their plans would 
supplement those already mentioned, and make nearly complete the 
record of the industrial condition of the State. 


Mr. Davis concluded by saying he thought it was evident that 
it lay in the power of the different libraries of the State to secure 
collections of these maps and plans which would perpetuate the 
knowledge of the condition of the manufacturing interests in their 
respective vicinities. The enterprise of covering the entire State 
might prove too costly for any one institution to undertake, but it 
was clear to him that local collections could easily be made which 
in the future would prove to be of inestimable value. He did not 
doubt the Society would recognize the great value of the communi- 
cation winch had brought the attention of the Society to this 

Mr. Davis also called attention to the fact that there was issued 
a valuable set of real-estate maps of Boston. These maps could 
be found in some of our libraries, and he would leave to Mr. Edes 
a more complete description of them. 

Mr. Henry H. Edes presented for inspection some 
volumes of the Bromley maps of Boston, and said : — 

The Bromley maps do not give so much detailed information as 
those which Mr. Davis has been describing. They are used chiefly 
by persons, firms, and corporations having to do with transactions 
in real estate. The maps show a ground-plan of all the estates and 
public squares in the city, on a scale varying from fifty feet to 
the inch in the business sections to two hundred feet to the inch 
in the outlying, residential wards. The street lines and numbers, 
and the boundary lines and ownership of each estate, with the area 
in square feet, are clearly shown ; and the materials of which the 
exterior walls of the buildings are constructed is indicated by the 
use of colors in printing the maps. 

The Bromley maps cover the cities of Cambridge, Somerville, 
and Newton and the town of Brookline, besides the city of Boston, 
the area of which is shown in detail in ten volumes, such as are 
now before you. 

The historical value of these surveys appears to me to be great, 
since they enable us to see at a glance the general aspect of a given 
locality and the proprietorship of adjoining and adjacent estates. 
What would we not give for a similar set of maps made during 
the Colonial or Provincial period of Boston's history! It is 


true that rough maps have been made in recent years, and printed 
in the Memorial History of Boston and elsewhere, showing approx- 
imately the location of the residences of Boston's principal inhab- 
itants ; but such a set of maps as these, dating back one or two 
centuries, would give us an accurate picture of the houses and 
gardens at that time of all the people, — the lowly as well as the 
great, — and show us the curious old street lines which are known 
to-day only to the conveyancer and the antiquary. 

The subject of Mr. Davis's letter was further discussed 
by several members. 

Mr. Abner C. Goodell, Jr., read a paper on Capt. John 
Quelch, the Pirate, his exploits, trial, and execution, in 1704, 
comprising extracts from Notes to a chapter of the Resolves 
in the forthcoming eighth volume of the Province Laws, 
fully covering this memorable affair. By way of preface, 
Mr. Goodell recalled the note of the editors of the second 
volume of Judge Se wall's Diary, in relation to the capture 
of Quelch, that " it is somewhat surprising that so little 
remains on record in regard to Quelch's affair. We find 
nothing worth mention in the State archives ; " x and stated 
that he proposed to show that it is quite possible to recover 
the minutest details of the piracy, of the capture, trial, exe- 
cution, and subsequent proceedings. He then narrated the 
story of the deeds of Quelch and his companions, and the 
proceedings for their arrest, the expedition to the Isles of 
Shoals under Major Sewall, the capture of the pirates, their 
trial in Boston, the execution of Quelch and four others in 
Charles River, off a point of land below Copp's Hill on 30 
June, 1704, and the sequel to what he termed one of the 
clearest cases of judicial murder in American annals. Per- 
haps the most trying ordeal which the sufferers underwent, 
Mr. Goodell observed, was the attentions of the clergy. 
Cotton Mather, who was habitually an interested spectator 

1 Sewall's Diary, ii. 105. 


at public executions, labored for the benefit of their souls in 
his peculiarly harrowing and reproachful style. In the 
chamber of the prison on the Tuesday before their execu- 
tion, he prayed for, preached to, and catechised them, as 
Sewall says, " excellently." He and another clergyman 
walked with them, as, guarded by forty musketeers, con- 
stables of the town, the provost marshal, etc., they marched 
in solemn procession to Scarlet's Wharf ; and he there 
embarked with them on their melancholy voyage to the 
gallows, preceded by the silver oar of the Admiralty. The 
exhortations to the condemned, and Mather's long prayers, — 
in which he interlarded extravagant invectives against these 
unhappy men, with interjections and ejaculations, and warn- 
ings to the multitude of spectators crowded into boats upon 
the water and covering the adjacent shore, to profit by their 
terrible example, — were duly printed in the News-Letter, 
together with the dying speeches of the men. Sewall, in 
his account of the execution, says : — 

" But when I came to see how the River was covered with 
People I was amazed. Some say there were one hundred boats ; 
One hundred and fifty boats and Canoes, saith Cousin Moody of 
York. He told them . . . when the Scaffold was hoisted to a due 
height the seven malefactors went up ; Mr. Mather prayed to them, 
standing upon the boat. Ropes were all fasten'd to the gallows 
(save King, who was Repriev'd). When the scaffold was let to 
sink, there was such a Screach of the Women that my wife heard 
it sitting in our Entry next the Orchard and was much surprised 
at it ; yet the wind was sou'west. Our house is a full mile from 
the place." 1 

The offences for w T hich Quelch and his companions were 
tried were committed on board a brigantine of about eighty 
tons, — the Charles, owned by Charles (afterwards Sir 
Charles) Hobby, Colonel Nicholas Paige, William Clarke, 
Benjamin Gallop, and John Colman, leading citizens and 

1 Se wall's Diary, ii. 109, 110, and notes. 


merchants of Boston, — and the circumstances, briefly nar- 
rated, were as follows. 

The Charles was fitted out by her owners as a privateer 
for an intended expedition against the French enemies of 
England in Acadia and Newfoundland. On the thirteenth 
of July, 1703, her commander, Captain Daniel Plowman, 
received from Governor Dudley a commission to command 
this private vessel of war in the pursuit of pirates and the 
Queen's enemies, together with instructions to govern his 
conduct during the cruise. As late as the first of August, 
the Charles, which in the mean time had been manned and 
equipped, was riding off Marblehead, and on that day Cap- 
tain Plowman wrote to two of her owners informing them 
of his inability to take her to sea on account of his severe 
illness, and suggesting that they come the next day to " take 
some speedy care in saving what we can." In response to 
this letter, the owners went to Marblehead ; but Plowman 
was then too ill to see them, although able to write to them 
again, urging them to have the vessel sent to Boston and 
there to have all things aboard of her landed, to prevent em- 
bezzlement, and dissuading them from the purpose of sending 
her out under a new commander, declaring that " it will not 
do, with these people " (meaning his crew), and that " the 
sooner " the " things are landed on shore the better." 

Before the owners could take effectual measures to stop 
the vessel she proceeded to sea. Prior to her sailing, the 
crew, under the lead of one of their number, locked the 
commander into the cabin where he lay sick, and then, 
conformably to the resolution of Quelch, who came on 
board after the captain had been secured, they, under his 
command, made for the South Atlantic instead of their 
intended destination. Some time after Quelch came, the 
captain was thrown overboard, but whether alive or dead 
it does not appear. Off the coast of Brazil, not far from 
shore, between latitude seven degrees and thirty-six degrees 



south, it appears that they captured, between the fifteenth of 
November, 1703, and the seventeenth of February, 1703-4, 
nine vessels — of which five were brigantines (the largest 
being of about forty tons) ; one was a small shallop ; one a 
small fishing-boat ; one other a boat not particularly de- 
scribed ; and one a ship of about two hundred tons, loaded 
with hides and tallow and carrying twelve guns and about 
thirty- five men. All these vessels, apparently, were the 
property of subjects of the King of Portugal, an ally of the 
Queen of England ; * and from them they took various com- 
modities belonging to the Portuguese, such as fish, salt, 
sugar, molasses, ruin, beer, rice, flour, earthenware, linen, 
cloth and silk, besides one hundred weight of gold-dust, gold 
and silver coins to the value of one thousand pounds or 
more, two negro boys, and some great and small guns, 
ammunition, small arms, sails, etc., — of the total value of 
some seven hundred pounds more. One of the vessels they 
sunk, and another they appear to have kept as a tender. 

On the eighteenth of August the owners of the Charles, 
learning nothing certain of the fate of their vessel, and 
concluding from various circumstances that she was bound 
to the West Indies, wrote a letter (enclosing an official letter 
from Governor Dudley) to six plantations in the West Indies, 
respectively, setting forth their interest in her, and authoriz- 
ing their correspondents to take proper steps to prosecute 
their claims and recover their property. No tidings of her, 
however, appear to have been received until after the mid- 
dle of May, 1704, when her arrival was thus announced 
in the Boston News-Letter (No. 5) : — 

" Arrived at Marble-head, Capt. Quelch in the Brigantine that 
Capt. Plowman went out in, are said to come from New-Spain & 
have made a good Voyage." 

1 The treaty of amity and alliance between Great Britain and Portugal was 
signed at Lisbon, 1G May, 1703, and was renewed by Article xxvi. of the 
treaty of 1810. 


The crew seem either to have landed at different points 
along shore, or to have quickly dispersed after landing ; for 
some of them were at Salem, others at Marblehead, and 
others still at Boston, before all the arrests were made. 
They had not, however, been long on shore before so many 
circumstances transpired leading to the suspicion that they 
had committed acts of piracy against subjects of the King 
of Portugal, that the story which they had invented of recov- 
ering great treasure from a wreck began to be doubted ; and 
even the owners of the Charles became so suspicious of their 
criminal misconduct that they informed against them, in 
writing, to avoid the penalties denounced against accessaries 
by the act of Parliament. 1 

The informers were Colman and Clarke, and the magis- 
trates applied to were Isaac Addington, Secretary of the 
Province, and Paul Dudley, Attorney-General. This was on 
the twenty-third of May ; and it would seem that Dudley 
immediately set out to capture them, since, on that day, 
Judge Sewall, who was returning from Newbury, records 
that at the tavern in Lynn he met Dudley " in egre pursuit 
of the Pirats," 2 having already captured one whom he turned 
over to Sewall. Sewall sent the captive to Boston under 
guard of two men, charging them to convey him to Secre- 
tary Addington. 2 

On the next day, in the Governor's absence, Lieutenant- 
Governor Povey, in the performance of his official duty and 
in compliance with standing instructions to the Governor 
from the Privy Council, issued a proclamation for the arrest 
of the pirates and the seizure of their treasure, and for 
taking the offenders to Boston, for trial. 

1 By the following November, the Charles, being still the property of the 
same owners, had sailed upon another expedition as a privateer, under a new 
commission. See Province Laws, viii. 140, 525, Resolves, 1705-6, Chapter 62 
and note. 

2 Diary, ii. 102. 


On the twenty-sixth, news came from Rhode Island that 
five of Quelch's crew had purchased a small, decked boat 
and sailed, it was thought, for Long Island, in season to 
avoid arrest upon an order sent express from Boston. One 
of Quelch's men was seized by order of Governor Cranston 
and sent " from constable to constable " to Boston. 

On the twenty-ninth, Governor Dudley issued another 
proclamation to the same purpose as Povey's, adding a 
prohibition against concealing the pirates or their treasure. 
In this proclamation the names of forty-two pirates are 
given, being one more than were inserted in the former 

On the sixth of June, several ounces of gold having been 
brought to the Council Board as part of the treasure taken 
by the pirates, a Commission of Inquiry was issued by the 
Governor, directing Samuel Sewall, acting Chief Justice of 
the Superior Court, 1 Nathaniel Byfield, Judge of the Ad- 
miralty, and Paul Dudley, Attorney-General, " to repair to 
Marblehead, & to send for and examin all persons of whom 
they shall have Information or just ground of suspition, 
[that they] do conceal and detain " gold and treasure 
brought in by the pirates, " either at Marblehead, or parts 
adjacent, and to take what they shall find into their hands ; 
as also to secure any of the Pirates." 

The Commissioners proceeded to Marblehead, by way of 
Salem, where they learned that two of Quelch's company 
were at Cape Ann, intending to embark on the " Larramore 
Galley," which was at that place under command of Cap- 
tain Thomas Larramore, a noted privateer. 

1 Addington, who, after Winthrop's short term, succeeded Stoughton as Chief 
Justice, offered to resign his commission 23 July, 1703, but was suffered to retain 
it with the understanding that " no further service was expected from him 
therein at present," and that the Governor and Council would consider the sub- 
ject of filling that place " as soon as possible." After this, and until Wait Win- 
throp was reappointed, 10 February, 1707-S, Sewall presided, and writs bore 
teste in his name. 


It was upon the receipt of these tidings that Major Sewall 
undertook the expedition to the Isles of Shoals, already men- 
tioned. The pirates were taken in company with Captain 
Larramore, who had befriended them ; and seven of them, 
besides Larramore, his lieutenant, and his sailing-master, 
were brought into Salem, and thence marched in chains to 
Boston, where they were tried and sentenced by a Court of 
Admiralty, presided over by Governor Dudley, and which sat 
at the Star Tavern 1 from the thirteenth to the nineteenth 
of June. 

1 See a foot-note to Mr. Lindsay Swift's paper at the December, 1894, Meeting 
(ante, i. 409), on the location of the Star Tavern. 



A Stated Meeting of the Society was held in the Hall 
of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences on 
Wednesday, 17 April, 1895, at three o'clock in the after- 
noon, the Corresponding Secretary in the chair. 

After the Minutes of the last Meeting had been read 
and approved, the Chair announced the death of the Hon. 
Leverett Saltonstall, a Founder and one of the Vice- 
Presidents of the Society elected at its first Annual Meeting. 

Mr. Philip H. Sears, a classmate of Mr. Saltonstall, spoke 
as follows : — 

My first acquaintance with Leverett Saltonstall was in July, 
1840, when we met at Cambridge to be examined for admission to 
the Freshman Class in Harvard. I had fitted for college at Phil- 
lips Academy, Andover, and he had fitted in the school at Salem. 
I arrived a little late, and was taken by President Quincy to the 
recitation-room of Tutor Bartlett, who was then examining in 
Virgil the candidates from Salem, — Leverett Saltonstall, Joseph 
Peabody, Stephen G.Wheatland, Richard D. Rogers, George Howes, 
and William G. Dix. I then saw Saltonstall for the first time, and 
liked him from the first sight. Through most of our college course 
we sat side by side in the Greek recitation-room of Professors 
Felton and Sophocles, and in other recitation-rooms. After we 
became members of the Suffolk Bar we met very frequently, both 
socially and in business transactions and the trial of cases. I may 
mention particularly the case, tried before Judge Morton, of Forbes 
v. The Old Colony Railroad Company, in which he was counsel for 
the plaintiff and I was counsel for the railroad company. 

In all these relations with Saltonstall the trait in his character 
that always struck me most forcibly was his high sense of honor, 
which appeared on every occasion. Nothing unbecoming a man 
would be tolerated by him for a moment. He was, indeed, the 


very soul of honor. I recollect that when he dissolved a partner- 
ship in which he had been associated for some years I asked him 
why he had done it, and he replied that his partner had among his 
clients a crowd of butchers, bakers, and candlestick-makers who 
had such a low sense of business honor that he could stand them 
no longer. 

He carried the same sense of honor and high principle into pub- 
lic life. When he became Collector of the Port of Boston there 
was in an eligible place in the Custom House a Republican gentle- 
man with whom both he and I were acquainted, for whose removal 
great efforts were made. I spoke to him about the retention of 
this gentleman, and his reply was : " He is the right man for the 
place, and not all the politicians in the country can bring about his 
removal ; " and they did not accomplish it. 

Another trait in his character with which the members of the 
Harvard Class of '44 were always strongly impressed was the 
warmth and constancy of his friendships, and his great cordiality in 
the expression of friendly feelings. He always attended the meet- 
ings of the Class on Commencement Day, and whatever would 
promote the honor or welfare of the Class or any of its members 
found in him an advocate and friend. If any of the Class hap- 
pened to take part in any cause of charity or of public interest, he 
was sure to have Saltonstall's co-operation and aid. This Class- 
feeling, which seems now to be dying out at Cambridge, was with 
him, as with all members of the Class of '44, a deep sentiment as 
lasting as life. 

I might refer to many other qualities in his character, but as 
there are several other gentlemen here who are expected to speak 
I will occupy no further time. 

The Rev. Edward G. Porter followed with these re- 
marks : — 

Any one who knew Mr. Saltonstall — and some of you knew 
him much better than I did — must have been impressed with his 
broad and generous nature. His bearing and utterances on all 
occasions indicated a spirit of true magnanimity as agreeable as it 
is rare. There was evidently nothing petty or partisan about him. 
He always seemed to me to be the very soul of honor. 


Those traits which Mr. Sears has recalled from college days show 
that his classmate was endowed with a certain nobility of character 
from the beginning, and we are glad to-day to bear witness to the 
fidelity with which he maintained his own high standard to the 

We have seldom seen a man of his age so fresh and athletic in 
appearance, so youthful and buoyant in manner and in speech. 
For this reason doubtless he seemed many years younger than he 
really was. This was noticeable at the last Commencement, when 
he spoke for his Class, at its Fiftieth anniversary, with the same 
familiar, manly tones of loyalty to the Class and the College which 
always characterized him. 

At the time of the Centennial celebration at Philadelphia in 
1876, Mr. Saltonstall was one of the Commissioners from Massa- 
chusetts. As I was appointed among those who represented the 
State in the department of History, I had occasion to consult him 
in the execution of several plans, and I found him always obliging, 
well-informed, and enthusiastic. He did us good service during 
that hot summer by his unwearied labors, — meeting his associates 
in council, speaking at numerous public gatherings, and honoring 
the State by his uniform courtesy and his genuine patriotism. 

I remember sitting with him on the platform in the rear of 
Independence Hall at the great Fourth of July festival, when 
Dom Pedro, the public-spirited Emperor of Brazil, who sat near us, 
frequently turned to express his pleasure in hearing the address of 
Mr. Evarts and the poem of Bayard Taylor. Every one felt that 
Mr. Saltonstall was the peer of the representatives of the different 
States and nations assembled at Philadelphia during that memor- 
able year. 

I leave it to others to speak of his services as Collector of the 
Port, and in other positions of honor and trust. We all know how 
well he acquitted himself in every station to which he was called. 

The Hon. George S. Hale, also a classmate of Mr. Salton- 
stall, then said : — 

I am very glad to join in the tributes of my associates to my old 
friend and classmate. My last recollection of him is associated with 
the Fiftieth anniversary of our graduation, when he represented 


his Class at the dinner of the Alumni with an eloquent warmth 
which gratified them and all his other hearers. He was a man 
of high and generous impulses, untainted in his public and private 
service by personal interest, of dignified and gentlemanly bearing, 
a worthy descendant of our best New England stock, and a legiti- 
mate heir of its fine qualities. His public service in a difficult and 
important position at a critical time entitles him to our grateful 
recognition. Under trying circumstances, when a faithful example 
of disinterested fidelity to the cause of Civil Service Reform was 
of peculiar importance, he showed — and led — the way to the 
administration of a political office as a public trust. In Chaucer's 
phrase, "A veray parfit, gentle knight." 

Mr. Henry H. Edes spoke as follows : — 
Lord Bacon said, nearly three centuries ago, — 

" . . . it is a reverend thing to see an ancient castle or building not 
in decay, or to see a fair timber tree sound and perfect ; how much 
more to behold an ancient noble family, which hath stood against the 
waves and weathers of time ! for new nobility is but the act of power, 
but ancient nobility is the act of time." 

In his learned Annotations upon the Essay 1 containing this pas- 
sage, Archbishop Whately preserves an interesting observation of 
Bishop Warburton. During some angry dispute in the British 
House of Lords between a peer of noble family and one of a new 
creation, he said that — 

" high birth was a thing which he never knew any one disparage, except 
those who have it not ; and he never knew any one make a boast of it 
who had anything else to be proud of." 

I never read these golden sentences without thinking of Mr. 
Saltonstall, whose friendship I enjoyed for many years. He was 
proud of his lineage and of the honorable place which his family 
has held in private life and in public station, in every generation 
and in varied employments, from the very beginning of our Colonial 
history. Sir Richard Saltonstall, the first and second Governors 

i Essay XIV. , Of Nobility. 


Winthrop, Governor Leverett, and the Apostle Eliot were among 
his ancestors: so also were the two Elisha Cookes and Richard 
Middlecott, whose name he gave to his eldest surviving son. Nor 
were his distinguished forbears confined to the Colony of the Bay, 
for he had in his veins some of the best blood of the " Mayflower," 
including that of Governor Edward Winslow. But Mr. Saltonstall's 
pride of family was so tempered with humility and an unaffected 
modesty that it was far removed from that boastfulness of which 
Bishop Warburton speaks. Our associate often heard recalled, and 
with evident satisfaction, as he sat at table with his guests, the 
great deeds in the field, the council chamber, the legislative hall, 
the pulpit, or upon the bench, of the men who looked down upon 
his hospitable board from the canvases of Copley and other earlier 
artists of less note. 

For reasons well known to us all, Mr. Saltonstall's public service, 
until toward the close of his life, was in the field of philanthropy 
and education rather than in public office. It was, nevertheless, 
of great importance and value, as such unpaid service always is 
when rendered by an educated man of high character, ability, 
and zeal. 

A few weeks before Mr. Saltonstall was appointed Collector of 
the Port of Boston and Charlestown, when it was known to some 
of his friends that his name had been presented to the President in 
connection with that important office, he called upon me to acknowl- 
edge in person some little act of friendship. During our conversa- 
tion, I expressed the earnest hope that Mr. Cleveland would give 
fresh evidence of his sympathy with the proposed reform of the 
Civil Service by naming him for the Collectorship. Mr. Salton- 
stall thanked me, and said : — 

" I shall not make application for the place, or lift my hand to influ- 
ence the President's choice ; but if the honor comes to me unsought, it 
will be a great satisfaction to be able to prove in office the absolute sin- 
cerity of my opinions out of office during the past twenty years respect- 
ing the proper administration of the civil service of the government." 

How nobly he acquitted himself during his term of office is a 
matter of history. The appreciation of his eminent services by the 
merchants and many of the most prominent citizens of Boston, 
without distinction of party, — as evinced by their inviting him to 


a public dinner and to sit for his portrait, which now hangs in the 
Collector's room at the Custom House, — was in striking contrast 
with the haste at Washington to replace the most conspicuous Civil 
Service Reformer who had ever sat in the Collector's chair by a 
successor whose political opinions accorded with those of the new 

Mr. Saltonstall was keenly sensitive upon all points of honor, 
most genial and hearty in manner, and an intense hater of shams. 
Fond of the country and of athletic sports, his out-door life 
upon his beautiful estate at Chestnut Hill and his daily horse- 
back ride account in no small degree for that robust health which 
he enjoyed for many years. His great heart was stirred by indig- 
nities offered to the poor and lowly more readily perhaps than when 
attempted upon the rich and influential. An illustration of this 
is found in the incident, familiar to some of his friends, of his 
having chastised upon a public street in Boston a brutal cab- 
driver who was cruelly treating a poor apple-woman as our friend 
was passing her stand. 

Mr. Saltonstall's moral courage, urbanity, and high-mindedness 
comported well with his firm and reverent religious faith, which sup- 
ported him through the sorrows and bereavements from which his 
singularly happy life was not exempt, and enabled him to bear 
with fortitude and resignation the long and painful illness which 
he knew must be fatal. 

In taking note of our friend's departure, we cannot fail to be 
impressed with a sense of peculiar loss. Exerting upon the com- 
munity the benign influence of a pure life, a dignified presence, 
and courtly manners, he was one of the rare few who are univer- 
sally esteemed while they are living and mourned when dead. 
Gifted by inheritance as well as by culture with those chivalrous 
traits the possession of which the word " gentleman " implies, he 
would have felt himself disgraced and humiliated to know that he 
had ever unnecessarily wounded any human heart. His sincere 
cordiality, his ardent sympathies, his love of fair play, his honest 
indignation at everything wrong or mean, manifested in his per- 
sonal intercourse as well as in his public relations, so eclipsed all 
his qualities of deportment as to make a refined sociability his 
leading trait, and his friendship most to be coveted in life, and 
most missed now that he is gone. 


Mr. Henry Williams said : — 

I did not know Mr. Saltonstall personally, Mr. President, except 
by sight, but I had a brother who knew him well, and who never 
spoke of him but with respect. I had met him casually on many 
occasions ; for you know, Sir, the lines of life often approach very 
near to one another without ever crossing. I desire, however, to 
add one word to what has been already said by those who have 
preceded me. I recall an incident at the Alumni Dinner last 
year at Cambridge in connection with Mr. Saltonstall, and it is 
that of which I wish to speak. A custom has come up of late 
years of calling on one of the graduates of fifty years' standing to 
represent his classmates, and, in connection with this, to assign 
them a place near the speakers' table. Now, it has been my office 
for some time, as Class Secretary, to lead in the few survivors of 
my own Class who attend the dinner ; and we are rather tenacious 
of the prerogatives which gray hairs and approaching dulness of 
hearing bring with them. So, as usual, when I reached an eligible 
point for hearing the good things said on the platform, I was con- 
fronted with a printed legend that the table which I had selected 
for myself and two or three of my class was " Reserved" By way 
of parenthesis, let me recall what James Freeman Clarke says in a 
book published by him after his return from a short trip to Europe. 
His chief object was to visit the famous cathedrals of England. 
Arriving at York, I think it was, he went at once to see the Cathe- 
dral, which was then undergoing repairs, and he says, "I found 
over the main entrance, '•Positively no Admittance] and so I en- 
tered ! " Acting on this principle, the small squad of '37 took 
their seats where it seemed good and fitting ; but we had hardly 
time to congratulate ourselves upon being within easy earshot of 
what avus to be heard from those seated above us, when Mr. Salton- 
stall came in, apparently with those who represented his Class of 
'44. I recognized him at once, but I did not know beforehand 
that it was his office to speak for his classmates. However, he 
spoke to the waiter near us, took in the situation at a glance, 
saying, "It is just as well" and passed on to the other end of the 
table, from which, with the rest of the company present, we after- 
wards enjoyed his eloquent remarks and Ins interesting College 
reminiscences. Now, Sir, this is but a trifling incident, yet it is an 


instance of the gracious courtesy of the man. It touched me at 
the time ; I have often thought of it since ; and I could not resist 
the impulse to mention it, after listening to the remarks which we 
haye just heard concerning Mr. Saltonstall. 

Mr. Hale offered the following Resolution, which was 
unanimously adopted by a rising vote : — 

Resolved, That the members of The Colonial Society of Massa- 
chusetts desire to express and place upon their records their 
thorough appreciation of the high qualities of their associate, the 
Honorable Leveeett Saltonstall, of his manliness, his high 
sense of honor, his assistance in promoting the cause of Civil 
Service Reform, his fearlessness in political action under trying 
circumstances, and of his eloquent enthusiasm for the Reform 
which he advocated by example and precept. 

The Hon. John F. Andrew and Mr. Nathaniel Gushing 
Nash were appointed a Committee to examine the Treas- 
urer's Accounts ; 1 and the Hon. William E. Russell, 
and Messrs. Philip H. Sears and Charles S. Rackemann, 
a Committee on Nominations. 

Mr. Henry Williams announced the organization, on 
14 December, 1894, of 

the topsfield historical society. 

" Its object is the collection, preservation, and study of all historical 
materials relating to the town of Topsfield ; and it also shall be the pur- 
pose of the Society to encourage the study of Natural History in its 
various branches." 

Mr. Francis H. Lincoln read some extracts from the 
Journal of Lieut. Benjamin Beal, of Hingham, Mass., a 
soldier of the American Revolution in 1*775-1776, which he 
had recently discovered among his family papers. 

1 At a meeting of the Council held 15 October, 1895, the President appointed 
Mr. Gardiner M. Lane to fill the vacancy in this Committee occasioned by Mr. 
Andrew's death, which occurred on the thirtieth of May. 


The daily entries in this Journal chronicle the experience 
of Lieutenant Beal from 17 March, 1776, the day of the 
evacuation of Boston, to 6 December of that year. He was 
lieutenant in Capt. Charles Cushing's company, Colonel 
Greaton's regiment. 

After the evacuation of Boston this regiment and four 
others marched to New York ; thence they embarked for 
Albany, where they arrived 25 April. They reached Still- 
water 27 April, and Fort Edward 29 April. Thence by 
land and water they went to Montreal, where they arrived 
21 May. 

The disasters and sufferings of the troops in that unfortu- 
nate and fruitless expedition are matters of history, and 
Lieutenant Beal in his Journal confirms them by relating 
the personal experiences of himself and his comrades. For 
the purpose of showing the character of the document, Mr. 
Lincoln read from its pages certain selected extracts which 
brought vividly before the Society the sufferings of the 
troops. The reading was accompanied by explanatory re- 
marks on the part of Mr. Lincoln for the purpose of 
refreshing the memory of his hearers as to the details of 
the expedition. He also pointed out the quaintness of some 
of the spelling, and the originality of many of the expres- 
sions used by the journalist. 

The reading was listened to with interest, and the whole 
matter was referred to the Committee of Publication ; but 
Mr. Lincoln was of opinion that there were not enough new 
facts in the diary to justify its publication. 

Mr. Frederick Lewis Gay communicated the following 
information on the location in Boston of one of the man- 
sion-houses of Governor Winthrop, — that in which he lived 
longest, — which appears to have escaped the notice of his- 
torians hitherto : — 


The site of Governor John Winthrop's house in Boston is a 
point of interest to local antiquaries and to many strangers within 
our gates. Those writers who allude to the subject agree in placing 
Winthrop's house on the piece of land once known as "the 
Green," opposite the eastern end of School street, but they fail to 
mention the fact that he had previously lived elsewhere in Boston. 
A writer in the Memorial History of Boston, for instance, in speak- 
ing of the Governor's later home says : " for nineteen years it was 
the residence of John Winthrop, the foremost man in the colony of 
Massachusetts Bay ; in it he died in 1649." 1 This house was 
bought by the Rev. John Norton in 1659. At a later day it be- 
came the parsonage of the Old South Church, and in it lived 
Willard, Sewall, Prince, and other ministers well known in their 
day and generation. The house was torn down by the British sol- 
diers during their occupation of Boston. My purpose is to show 
that the Governor lived less than six years in this house, and that 
his home during the earlier part of his residence in Boston, per- 
haps for twelve years, was situated on land a few feet south of 
State street between Kilby and Congress streets. 

" The Green " was bounded on three sides by Milk and Wash- 
ington streets and Spring lane. There is nothing to indicate that 
any building was erected on it before 1643. This land, " which 
was the Governor's first lot " as we are told by Winthrop in his 
History of New England, had been offered to the First Church in 
1639 as the site for a new meeting-house. Several members 
addressed the Governor on the subject, beginning their letter in 
these words : — 

" The fruit of your Worship's Liberall Disposition (which the God of 
all fulnesse will reward) in so freely offering the Greene to place the 
meeting-howse thereon causes us as thankefully to Acknowledge it." 

The offer, however, was not accepted, although a strong plea 
was made in favor of building there. In November, 1643, Gov- 
ernor Winthrop conveyed to his son Stephen " all that my lott or 
parcell of land in Boston aforesaid called the Greene lyeing by the 
spring." 2 This description of the property conveyed says nothing 
about a house. That no house was then standing on the ground is 

1 Memorial History of Boston, i. 481. a Suffolk Deeds, i. 102. 


to be inferred from this omission, coupled with the following pro- 
vision of the deed : — 

" Provided alwayes that I the said John Winthrop and Margaret my 
wife may have and use one halfe of the said parcell of land called the 
Greene and one halfe of the buildings to be there uppon erected for the 
terine of our lives." 

One of the buildings thereupon erected after the date of this 
deed was the house in which the Governor spent his last days. As 
he died in March, 1649, the time covered by his residence in it 
could not have exceeded six years. 

Governor Winthrop suffered heavy financial losses in 1639 
through the dishonesty of his bailiff, James Luxford, whom he had 
trusted with the management of his farm. He was forced to part 
with his lands at different times in his endeavor to satisfy his cred- 
itors. In so doing, he conveyed to William Tyng, Valentine Hill, 
and eight others, " his mansion house in Boston," naming as the 
consideration, " divers summes of money wherein he stands indebted 
to them and divers others." According to the record, " this was 
by an absolute deed of sale dated the 26 of the 7 month, 1643. " , 
This was about six weeks before Winthrop conveyed " the Green " 
to his son Stephen. The question of the location of this mansion 
house, evidently the Governor's home before September, 1643, is 
best answered by tracing its subsequent ownership. 

One of the creditors named above, Valentine Hill, a public-spir- 
ited merchant who was for several years one of the Selectmen and 
a member of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company, came 
into possession of the house. 2 He in turn, "by his deed bearing 
date May 24, 1649," sold to Richard Hutchinson, of London — 

" all that mansion house in Boston formerly the house of John Win- 
thropp. Senior, of Boston, Esquire, with all the yards, orchards, gardens, 
and all the housing thereon erected, the house and garden then in pos- 
session of Capt. Robert Harding excepted." 

The property is described as bounded with the street (afterward 
State street) and the houses of Capt. Robert Harding, William 
Davies, and John Holland on the north ; the cove east ; the creek 

i Suffolk Deeds, i. 45. 

8 For his title, recently discovered, see 2 Proceedings of the Massachusetts 
Historical Society for November, 1896, xi. 185-187. 


and Mr. Stephen Winthrop's marsh, south ; house and land of Mr. 
Thomas Leverett, west. 1 

In the description we need to note only the sites of Harding's 
and Leverett's houses. Harding's lot was on the westerly corner 
of the present State and Kilby streets, and was later the site of 
" The Bunch of Grapes " tavern. When Harding sold his house 
to Edward Lane in 1651, it was described as " near adjoining to a 
messuage late belonging to John Winthrop deceased." 2 Leverett's 
lot was on the easterly corner of State and Congress streets. 

Richard Hutchinson, of London, brother-in-law of Anne Hutch- 
inson, had large interests in Boston, but he does not appear 
to have been a resident in this country. His ownership of that 
part of the Winthrop estate under consideration lasted until 1 
March, 1657-8, when he sold it, with certain immaterial exceptions, 
to William Brenton, distinctly including in the sale the " mansion 
house, heretofore the house of said John Winthropp, Senior." 3 

The Harding lot spoken of above, passing successively through 
the hands of Edward Lane, John Leverett, Thomas Brovighton, and 
others, was bought by Joshua Atwater, in 1660, when it was said 
to be bounded westerly by the house of William Brenton. 4 

William Brenton, a prominent man in Boston and Newport, was 
for several years Governor of Rhode Island. Selling portions of 
the Winthrop land from time to time, he parted with the mansion- 
house lot fronting on State street in 1671. The lot had a frontage 
of 114 feet, an average depth of about 115 feet, and measured 121 
feet in the rear. Brenton sold the house and westerly two thirds 
of the lot to Elisha Hutchinson, 10 April, 1671. 5 On the west 
Hutchinson was bounded by Governor John Leverett, who had 
succeeded his father, Thomas Leverett, in the ownership of the lot 
at the easterly corner of State and Congress streets. The remain- 
ing easterly third, running back to Brenton's orchard, with a 
kitchen thereon, was sold by Brenton, 12 April, 1671, to Joshua 
Atwater, who already owned the adjoining Harding lot at the 
northwesterly corner of State and Kilby streets. 6 Atwater had 
occupied, as Brenton's tenant, the lot which he now bought, the 
deed describing it as land " on which said Joshua Atwater hath 
built a faire dwelling howse." 

1 Suffolk Deeds, iii. 124. 

2 Ibid. i. 321. 

s Ibid. iii. 124. 

* Ibid. v. 231. 

5 Ibid. vii. 153. 

6 Ibid. vii. 302. 


By this account of the changes in the ownership of the "Winthrop 
mansion-house lot from 1G43 to 1671, we believe that we have 
shown that the site of the house is to be found near, if not actually 
on, the ground now covered by the main hall of the present Exchange 

Mr. Andrew McFakland Dayis made the following com- 
munication concerning Sir Thomas Mowlson : — 

Advantage has already been taken of the opportunity afforded 
through the publication of these Transactions, to make public cer- 
tain facts which had been obtained concerning Sir Thomas and 
Lady Mowlson. The object of the present communication is to 
add, to what has already been published, such information as I was 
able to obtain during a visit made last summer to the little chapel 
in Cheshire erected by Sir Thomas in 1627. Hargrave is between 
five and six miles, in a southerly and easterly direction, from Ches- 
ter. The chapel figures on the British Ordnance Maps as St. 
Peter's Church. The name Hargrave appears in connection with 
the parish or hamlet, and also in special designations, such as 
Hargrave Old Hall, Hargrave Farm, and Hargravehall Farm; 
but one will look in vain for Hargrave-Stubbs, the title by which 
the hamlet is designated in Ormerod's History of Cheshire. 1 
The inhabitants seem to be content with the shorter title of Har- 
grave as a means of describing the locality, and, with the excep- 
tion that Hargrave-Green is sometimes spoken of, are apparently 
unconscious that they could lay claim to any other. The present 
rector of the parish, Reverend Thomas J. Evans, 2 is a man of anti- 
quarian tastes, and has taken steps to obtain information as to the 
founder of the chapel, and to protect from the ravages of time 

1 The History of the County Palatine and City of Chester . . . incorporated 
with a republication of King's Vale Royal and Leycester's Cheshire Antiqui- 
ties, By George Ormerod, Esq., LL.D., &c, &c, &c. Second edition, revised and 
enlarged by Thomas llelsby, Esq., of Lincoln's Inn, Barrister-at-Law. In three 
volumes. London, 1882, ii. 805. 

See also Magna Britannia ; being a concise topographical account of the sev- 
eral Counties of Great Britain, by the Rev. Daniel Lysons, A.M. . . . and 
Samuel Lysons, Esq., F.R.S. London, 1810, iii. 798. 

2 My kindly reception by Mr. Evans deserves a more grateful acknowledg- 
ment than 1 can give in these pages. 



Built at the cost of Sir Thomas Mowlson, 1627. 


such memorials as are under his charge. Over the entrance to the 
chapel, in the gable of the porch, there is a tablet inserted in the 
wall bearing the sculptured arms of Sir Thomas, and beneath these 
an incised inscription. The tablet is of the red sandstone of the 
neighborhood, of which the chapel is built, and the raised sculpture 
of the coat-of-arms is much weather-worn. The face of the stone 
where the inscription is registered was also much worn away ; but 
Mr. Evans, in order to preserve the record, recently had the letters 
deepened. In doing this he took every precaution to preserve the 
form and shape of each letter precisely as it was originally cut. 
The legend is now quite legible. It has already been quoted in 
our Transactions, from Ormerod's Cheshire ; but I give the follow 
ing reproduction of it as it appears on the porch gable : — 

Thomas Moulsone 
of y e citty of London 
Alderman built this 
chappell vpon his 
owne cost & charge 

An: Dm: 1627 

The chapel is in perfect repair, and the interior is quite pretty. 
This is in a great measure due to the liberality of the present Duke 
of Westminster and his father. The school, which was originally 
carried on in the western end of the building, now occupies a 
separate structure just west of the chapel. 

Mr. Evans kindly placed at my command such notes as he had 
gathered containing information relative to the founder of the 
chapel. Among these was a complete copy of so much of the 
Report of the Commissioners of Charity as relates to this founda- 
tion. 1 This report gives in detail the material used by Ormerod in 
his account of the chapel and school. There was also certain infor- 
mation, credited by a correspondent of Mr. Evans to Mr. Charles 
Welch, of the Guildhall Library, London. The new matter in this 
was to the following effect : Sir Thomas — 

" was an inhabitant of the Parish of St. Christopher le Stocks . . . from 
1608 till his death in 1638. Here he had a mansion with very extensive 

1 Report of the Commissioners appointed in pursuance of an Act of Parlia- 
ment made and passed in the 5th and 6th years of King William the 4th, c. 71. 
Intituled, &c, &c, &c. London, 1837. 


grounds, abutting I think on Princess St. . . . [He] was in 1632 Gov- 
ernor of the Company of Merchant Adventurers." 

At the Guildhall Library in London, I pursued the investigation 
still further, and, through the courteous assistance which I there 
received, I was able to establish one or two additional points of 
interest in Sir Thomas's career. In Orridge's Citizens of London * 
there is a tabulated list of the Lord Mayors, showing the date of 
the mayoralty of each incumbent, and giving the Company to 
which he belonged. Under date of 1633, in the column headed 
" Mayors," appear two names, Sir Ralph Freeman and Sir Thomas 
Mowlson; while under the column headed " Company," the word 
" Clothworker " is recorded. This entry has caused it to be stated 
that Sir Thomas was a member of the Clothworkers' Company. 
One of the first things that I had determined in my own mind con- 
cerning him, in previous investigations, was that he was a member 
of the Grocers' Company. If this conclusion was correct, it was 
impossible that he should simultaneously have been a member of 
the Clothworkers' Company ; and the entry in the table, in that 
event, would have been descriptive only of Sir Ralph Freeman. 
An examination of an Account of the Grocers' Company, printed 
for the Company in 1689, 2 revealed the fact that Sir Thomas was 
enrolled among their benefactors. He contributed £200 towards 
a fund " to be lent to young members of the Company, on small or 
no interest at the discretion of the Wardens and Assistants." 

On the other hand, Heath's account of the Company, 3 published 
in 1854, contains a list of the Lord Mayors who have been mem- 
bers of the Grocers' Company, in which the name of Sir Thomas 
does not occur. 

In the Papers of the House of Commons, 4 the name of Sir 

1 Some Account of the Citizens of London and their Rulers from 1060 to 
1867, by B. B. Orridge. . . . London, 1867. p. 234. 

2 A short Account of the Company of Grocers, from their Original together 
with their case and condition (in their present circumstances) truly stated. . . . 
London, 1689. 

8 Some Account of the Worshipful Company of Grocers of the City of 
London, by John Benjamin Heath, Esq., F.R. and A.S. Second edition. 
London, 1854. 

4 Papers of the House of Commons, 1878, Vol. 62. The titlepage of this 
volume is somewhat obscure, but I give it verbatim : Accounts and Papers. 


Thomas appears among those returned to serve in Parliament, 
1627-1628. He is there described as an alderman and as a repre- 
sentative of London City. The date of his return is given 19 
February, 1627-8. 

The Register of the Parish of St. Christopher le Stocks 1 has 
been printed. I quote the entry which concerns us in this con- 
nection. Punctuation will not help us to determine which of the 
two dates applies to the event which is entered between them ; 
but we are left in the settlement of this question to other sources 
of information : — 

" 15th August 1638 was buried Sr Thomas Moulson : Grocer : Once 
Lord Maior of the Cittey of London 10th January 1638." 

The Guildhall Library is the owner of some manuscript notes 
collected by J. J. Stocken. Among these notes are the following: 

"Moulson, Thomas, Kt. Grocer. Sheriff, 1623; Alderman of 
Broad St. ; Mayor, 1633, pt. ; Son of Thomas Moulson of Hargrave, Co. 
Cheshire; Lived in Threadneedle Street, where in 1617, was born his 
nephew, Sir Edward Turnoor, Speaker of the House of Commons ; Died, 
6. Dec. 1638." 

The statement made by Mr. Welch that Sir Thomas was at one 
time Governor of the Company of Merchant Adventurers rests 
upon the fact that Howel, in 1632, thus addressed him in one of 
his familiar letters. 2 

These fragmentary references add materially to our knowledge 

Thirty-nine volumes — (17, Part I.) — Members of Parliament. Part I. Ses- 
sion 17 January-16 August, 1878. LXII. Part I. p. 476. 

1 The Register Book of St. Christopher le Stocks, in the City of London. 
Edited by Edwin Treshfield. . . . London, 1882. p. 42. 

2 Westmin. 1 June, 1632. To Mr. Alderman Moulson, Governor of the 
Merchant Adventurers. Epistolse Ho — Elianse. Familiar Letters Domestic 
& Forren. ... By James Howel, Esq ; One of the Clerks of his late Ma ties 
most Honb le Privy Councell. The Fifth Edition. London, 1678. p. 216. 

I am indebted to Mr. Edward M. Borrajo, of the Guildhall Library, for this 
reference to the authority which was the basis of Mr. Welch's assertion relative 
to Sir Thomas's position in this Company. For this and for the courtesy 
which led him to submit the Stocken papers to my inspection, and for 
the great courtesy of my treatment at the Library, I desire to make my 


of the career of Sir Thomas Mowlson. We already knew that he 
was in public service during the greater part of his life ; but for 
the first time we learn that he was a Member of Parliament, and 
that he was honored by the distinguished position of Governor of 
the great Company of Merchant Adventurers. His reputation as 
a generous giver has already been so well established that the dis- 
covery of his name among the benefactors of the Company to which 
he belonged might confidently have been predicted. Here, as else- 
where, he stands true to the ideal which we must necessarily have 
conceived of him. 

It may be said that it does not follow, because he gave to the 
Grocers' Company, that he was therefore a member of that Com- 
pany. The constant references to him as a grocer, with which we 
meet, leave little room for doubt upon that point. The omission 
of the name of his Company in the table prepared by Orridge, to 
which I have already alluded, was a very natural error on the part 
of Orridge, and counts for but little. It was of precisely the same 
class as the omission of his name by Heath from the list of grocers 
who had been Lord Mayors. In each case it arose from the fact 
that Sir Thomas's service was for an unexpired term for which 
another had originally been elected. 

Mr. Stocken gives the date of his death as 6 December, 1638. 
The interment entry at St. Christopher le Stocks, if the month is 
correct, must have been old style, and should have been January 
10, 1638-9, as given by Dr. Marshall. 1 The establishment by Lady 
Mowlson of a scholarship at Harvard College is the only cause for 
our taking any special interest in the career of Sir Thomas. The 
investigations which I have here recorded add nothing directly to 
our knowledge of her life ; yet I feel that there is some gain in 
the accumulation of facts which enable us to estimate more truly 
the position in London society which this generous lady must have 

Mr. Henry H. Edes communicated a Bibliography of the 
Historical Publications of the New England States. It was 
prepared by Mr. Appleton P. C. Griffin, formerly of the Bos- 
ton Public Library, who offered it for the Society's accept- 

1 Ante, i. 353. 


ance. The thanks of the Society were given to Mr. Griffin 
for this valuable paper, and it was referred to the Com- 
mittee of Publication. 


The purpose of this paper is to give a Bibliographical Account 
of the collections of printed Archives of the several New England 
States, with descriptive analyses of their contents. 

As introductory to the Bibliography proper, it has seemed to me 
fit to enumerate briefly the more recent additions to the printed 
documentary literature upon American history. It has been no 
part of my plan to include in the Bibliography the reprints of the 
Bodies of Laws, such as Whitmore's editions of the Laws of 1660 
and 1672, or that monumental work of minute historical research, 
Mr. Goodell's edition of the Province Laws. 

I have not attempted any account of Colonial Legislation, except 
that I have put down some few facts necessary to a bibliographical 
description of the printed records. 

The progress of historical research and the more widely recog- 
nized necessity of recourse to original sources for the correct 
understanding of historical questions have brought about an in- 
creased activity in the printing of documentary material. 

"Within a comparatively short period the literature of the English 
beginnings of American history has received the following acces- 
sions : the Calendars of State Papers published by the Public 
Record Office, the Reports of the Historical Manuscripts Com- 
mission, Stevens's "Fac-similes of Historical Manuscripts," and 
Brown's " Genesis of the United States." 

From France we have had Doniol's " Histoire de la participation 
de la France a l'etablissement des Etats-Unis d'Amerique," in five 
large quarto volumes. 

For Spanish America the series of forty odd volumes of reprints 
of papers, narratives, etc., from the archives of Spain, entitled 
" Colecci6n de documentos ine'ditos relativos al descubrimiento, con- 
quista y colonizacion de las posesiones Espanolas en America ; " 
the " Cartas de Indias," and Icazbalceta's " Nueva Colecci6n de 
documentos para la historia de Mexico." 


The great body of Columbus documents brought out by the 
celebration of the four hundredth anniversary of the discovery of 
America would require a special paper for even a superficial 
description of its contents. As a representative production of 
Columbus centenary literature there may be cited the Collection in 
fourteen folio volumes, entitled, "Raccolta di Documenti e Studi 
pubblicati dalla R. Commissione Colombiana pel Quarto Cente- 
nario dalla Scoperta dell' America." 

Before noticing the collections brought out in this county, I 
will speak of the issues of the Canadian press as touching the 
documentary history of the United States. In 1883 the Gov- 
ernment of Canada instituted a Department of Archives, in which 
have been gathered copies of papers preserved in the depositaries 
of Europe, as well as original documents belonging to Canada. 
Mr. Douglas Brymner, the archivist, has calendared the collection, 
and his successive annual reports from 1883 to 1894 have con- 
tained the results of his labors. The Haldimand Papers, the cor- 
respondence of Gage, Lord Amherst, Bouquet, and others, have 
especial value for our early history. 

In Canada there have also appeared a series of French papers 
under the editorship of the Abbe' Casgrain, comprising reprints of 
the De LeVis Papers, including the correspondence of Governors 
Duquesne and Vaudreuil, 1755-1760, the Journal and Letters of 
Montcalm, etc. ; and the Government has issued a work in four 
large quarto volumes, entitled, u Collection de manuscrits con- 
tenant lettres, memoires, et autres documents historiques relatifs a 
la Nouvelle-France." 

Of the thirteen original States of the United States, all but Dela- 
ware, Georgia, and South Carolina have published some portion of 
their archives. It devolved upon the Historical Society of Dela- 
ware to publish all that has appeared in print of the archives of 
that State, the "Minutes of the Council of the Delaware State 
from 1776 to 1792," forming one of the volumes of the publications 
of the Society. The documents relating to the early settlements 
on the Delaware are necessarily brought into the Pennsylvania and 
New York publications. 

As the publications of the New England States are to receive 
distinct treatment further on, I will now briefly record the work 
of the other States in printing their Records. 


The State of New York has published a series of fifteen vol- 
umes, entitled " Documents Relative to the Colonial History of the 
State of New-York;" "Calendars of New York Historical Manu- 
scripts," in four volumes; andO'Callaghan's " Documentary History 
of the State of New-York," in four volumes, of which there are 
octavo and quarto editions published in 1849 and 1850, respectively, 
the quarto issue having been subjected to revision and extension. 

The records of Pennsylvania have been exhaustively issued for 
public use, and the series of archives has been most admirably 
grouped for consultation. The first collection of papers printed 
was published under the editorship of Samuel Hazard, with the 
title " Colonial Records of Pennsylvania " in .twelve octavo vol- 
umes. The second collection has the title of " Pennsylvania Ar- 
chives," and comprises twelve volumes in a first series and nineteen 
in a second. In the latter the papers are carefully classified, and 
single volumes are given up to the "Whiskey Insurrection," " Colo- 
nies on the Delaware," the " French Occupation of Pennsylvania," 
I Marriage Records of Colonial Churches," the "Boundary Dispute 
between Pennsylvania and Maryland," the " Connecticut Settle- 
ment of Western Pennsylvania ; " and several volumes are devoted 
to the Revolutionary Rolls, with numerous Journals and Diaries of 
Revolutionary officers. 

Under the editorship, first of William A. Whitehead, and later 
of William Nelson of the New Jersey Historical Society, the State 
of New Jersey has published eighteen volumes of " Documents 
relating to the Colonial History of the State of New Jersey." The 
eleventh and twelfth volumes, which have lately appeared (pub- 
ished out of their numerical order), are devoted to historical items 
:rom early Colonial Newspapers, with some account of the American 
Colonial press. 

The Maryland Historical Society has had the supervision of the 
>roduction of the "Archives of Maryland," and under the skilful 
sditorship of William Hand Browne, there have been published 
hirteen large quarto volumes, including Proceedings and Acts of 
be General Assembly, Journals of the Council, Correspondence of 
governor Sharpe, Judicial and Testamentary Business of the Pro- 
incial Court, Journal of the Council of Safety. 

The State of North Carolina has caused to be gathered in the 
ffice of the Secretary of State a full collection of documents mainly 



drawn from the Archives of Great Britain ; and these papers have 
been presented in ten large quarto volumes in handsome typo- 
graphy, but with insufficient editing. Embracing as these papers 
do everything possible to be found regarding the Province of Caro- 
lina, they in good measure make up for the inaccessibility of the 
Records of South Carolina. 

In New England, Connecticut was the first State to put forth a 
volume of its Records in printed form. The first volume, published 
in 1850, contains the Documents relating to the Colony prior to 
the Union with New Haven, and includes the Charter, Records of 
the General and Particular Courts, Record of Wills and Invento- 
ries, the Southampton Combination, and Claims to the Pequot 
Country. The Journals of the General Assembly down to and 
including part of the year 1776, with the Journals of the Governor 
and Council, form the body of the Papers printed in the fifteen 
volumes issued by Connecticut under the title of " The Public 
Records of the Colony of Connecticut." Two volumes of the 
Public Records of the State of Connecticut have lately been pub- 
lished, and are more fully described in the bibliography proper. 

The New Haven Colony Records were published in 1857 and 
1858 under the editorship of Charles J. Hoadly, the first volume 
being the " Records of the Colony and Plantation of New Haven, 
from 1638 to 1649 ;" and the second, " Records of the Colony or 
Jurisdiction of New Haven from May, 1653, to the Union." 

The first volume of Rhode Island Records was published in 
1856, and comprised records of the settlements at Providence, 
Portsmouth, Newport, and Warwick, and of the Colony of Rhode 
Island and Providence Plantations under the first Charter. The 
publication of the Records of this State was completed in 1865 
with the issue of the tenth volume. The Proceedings of the 
General Assembly and the Proceedings of the Governor and Coun- 
cil were the chief documents printed, but certain accessory papers 
were also included. 

The New Hampshire authorities have shown a most commend- 
able public spirit in collecting and printing the Records of thai 
State. The first volume of the printed series was issued in 186' 
under the editorship of Nathaniel Bouton, D. D., with the title oj 
" I * rovincial Papers. Documents, and Records relating to the Provl 
ince of New Hampshire, from the earliest Period of its Settle! 


ment." This volume was also issued by the New Hampshire 
Historical Society as a part of its Collections. The complete set 
of the printed Records now numbers twenty-four volumes, the first 
seven bearing the title of Provincial Papers. Vol. 8, is entitled 
State Papers; Vol. 9, Town Papers; Vol. 10, Provincial and State 
Papers ; Vols. 11-13, Town Papers ; Vols. 14-17, Rolls and Docu- 
ments relating to Soldiers in the Revolutionary War; Vol. 18, 
Miscellaneous Provincial and State Papers ; Vol. 19, Provincial 
Papers ; Vols. 20-22, Early State Papers ; and Vols. 23, 24, State 
of New Hampshire. 

From the fact of having no existence as a State until recent 
times, Maine necessarily has no legislative Documents for the Colo- 
nial period. The four volumes of " Documentary History of the 
State of Maine," published by the Maine Historical Society with 
the assistance of the State, are concerned with the geographical 
history and the early settlements. Dr. J. G. Kohl's " History of 
the Discovery of Maine " constitutes the first volume of the Series ; 
i Hakluyt's " Discourse on Western Planting," the second ; the 
" Trelawny Papers," the third ; and the " Baxter Papers," the 
fourth. A volume of " Maine Wills," 1640-1760, and the " York 
Deeds " in ten volumes, are semi-official publications. 

The singular history of the origin and formation of the State of 
Vermont gives its Records some special characteristics. The eight 
volumes of " The Records of the Governor and Council," published 
by the State from 1873 to 1880 are largely taken up with Docu- 
ments upon the Controversy of the New Hampshire Grants. 
They include reports of proceedings of Conventions held at vari- 
ous towns for the purposes of defence against the claims of New 
5Tork, or to form plans of union, with reprints of controversial 
)amphlets on the respective claims of the New York and New 
lampshire settlers. 

The printed Records of our own State, as it is well known, are 
he five volumes edited by Dr. ShurtlefT. The Colony Records 
idiich Dr. Shurtleff used consist of five folio manuscripts. The 

|:st volume begins with the Records of the Company and of the 
ourt of Assistants in England, prior to the transfer of the govern- 
ent to New England, the last entry giving a meeting of the Court 
: Assistants on the Arbella, 23 March, 1629-30 ; followed by the 


Assistants at Charlestown, 23 August, 1630, and ending with the 
minutes of the General Court held 10 December, 1641. 

The first volume of ShurtlefTs edition also includes a copy of the 
Colony Charter, printed from the original manuscript, a letter of 
Governor Cradock in London to Endicott, and letters from the 
Governor and Company in England to the Governor and Council 
in America. Shurtleff's second volume is a transcript of the 
second volume of the manuscripts giving the Records of the 
General Court or Colony, as kept by the Secretary of the Com- 
monwealth, from 1642 to 1649. 

It will be observed that with the minutes of the Court of Assist- 
ants in the first volume of the printed work the Records of that 
Court cease. 

In the first volume of the original manuscript the Records of 
the Court of Assistants are interspersed in chronological order 
among the Records of the General Court. The cessation of this 
method of keeping the Records is perhaps explained by the fact 
that the Records of both bodies were no longer kept by the same 
officer. The introduction of a new hand in the duty of keeping 
the Records probably caused a departure from the method pursued 
in the first volume, and explains the failure of a continuance of the 
Court of Assistants' Records. The Records of the Court of As- 
sistants for the years 1641-1673 are not known to exist, but that 
such were kept seems certain. 

The contemporaneous copy of the Court Records acquired in 
1890 by the Public Library of the City of Boston, was found to 
contain the records of the Court of Assistants, beginning 28 Octo- 
ber, 1641, and ending with 5 March, 1643 ; and they were printed 
by Mr. William H. Whitmore in his "Bibliographical Sketch of 
the Laws of the Massachusetts Colony from 1630 to 1686." 

The Clerk of the Supreme Judicial Court for the County of 
Suffolk has in his custody a volume marked, " Court of Assistants, 
Second Booke of Records, beganne the third of March, 1673." 
This inscription implies the existence of a First Book of Records, 
and that one existed is borne out by citations in the Court Files. 
The composition of this " First Booke of Records " is a matter 
for conjecture. It may have covered the entire period from 1641, 
when the first volume of Records stops, down to 1673, with which 
date the " Second Booke of Records " begins, or it may have 


covered a shorter period. Mr. William P. Upham, who is assisting 
Mr. Noble 1 in preparing the Second Book for the press, is of the 
opinion that the Barlow excerpt is a copy from records kept by 
Increase Nowell, who was Secretary of the Colony or Common- 
wealth down to 1650, and was also Secretary of the Assistants 
from 1641 to that time. The Barlow excerpt affords internal evi- 
dence of being a copy from Nowell's notes. Rawson, who suc- 
ceeded NoweU as Secretary of the General Court or Colony in 
1650, from the requirements of the position must have taken up 
Nowell's work for the Court of Assistants at the same time. 

The First Book of Records, therefore, may have begun with 
Nowell's time, or possibly only with Rawson's assumption of the 
Secretaryship in 1650. The former seems the more probable 
theory ; so that the First Book, if it could be found, would fill the 
gap now existing in the Records of the Court of Assistants for 
the period from 1641 to 1673. 

The third volume of ShurtlefFs work is a transcript of the Rec- 
ords of the General Court kept by the Clerk of the House of 
Deputies from 1644 to 1657. It will be remembered that from 
1634, when the system of representation by Deputies was intro- 
duced at the Court of Elections, down to 1643, the Assistants and 
Deputies sat as one body. In 1644 the Houses were divided; the 
Governor and Magistrates sat in one room, and the Deputies in 

Prior to the assembling of the Deputies as a separate body, 29 
May, 1644, the Secretary, "amongst the magistrates (who is the 
generall officer of the Commonwealth) for the keeping of the pub- 
licke records of the same," appears to have been the only recording 
officer. The Records of the Deputies at their first Meeting were 
kept by one of their number, presumably Captain Bridges. This 
last information is due to Mr. William P. Upham, who has arrived 
at this conclusion after a study of the handwriting in which the 
Records of the first meeting appear. At the Court of Elections, 
begun on 14 May, 1645, Edward Rawson was elected Clerk of the 
Deputies "to enter all votes past in both houses & also those 
y* passe only by them." 

In 1648 it was deemed necessary to prescribe a definite method 

1 See Mr. Noble's paper read at the February, 1895, meeting, ante, pp. 51-65, 
and especially pp. 55 and 56. 


of keeping the Records. At that time the "secretary amongst 
the magistrates, (who is the gen r all officer of the comon wealth, 
for the keeping the publike records of the same,) " and the 
Clerk of the Deputies were given two books each, "bound up 
with velum & pastboard, . . . one to be a iournall to each of them, 
the other for the faire entry of all lawes, acts, & orders, &c, that 
shall passe the magistrates & deputies, that of the secretaries to 
be the publike record of the country, that of the clarkes to be a 
booke onely of coppies." 1 

The Secretary and Clerk were further directed " to enter into 
theire journalls respectiuely the titles of all bills, lawes, petitions, 
&c., that shalbe psented & read amongst them, what are referd 
to committees & what are voted negatiuely or affirmatively, & so 
for any additions or alterations." From this it appears that the 
Secretary and Clerk were each required to keep two books ; viz., 
a journal of their respective Houses, and a record of the concur- 
rent proceedings of both Houses, or the General Court. The 
Secretary's record to be the " publike record of the country," i. e. 
the Colony or Commonwealth ; and that kept by the Clerk of the 
Deputies, to be " a booke onely of coppies." 

For the formation of his " publike record," the Secretary was 
required at the end of each session of the General Court to enter 
in his Book of Records the "bills, lawes, petitions, &c," that were 
given to him by the whole Court " meete together," or by a Com- 
mittee of the Magistrates and Deputies appointed for this purpose, 
as appeared " to haue passed the Magistrates & Deputies." 

The Clerk of the Deputies who was given " libertie for one 
moneth after to transcribe the same into his booke of coppies," 
seems to have availed himself of this liberty ; for from this time 
(1648) the two Records (the Secretary's and the Clerk's, as printed 
in Shurtleff's second and third volumes) agree much more closely, 
both in arrangement and verbal rendering, than hitherto. 

From the above it would seem that the third volume in the 
Shurtleff edition is not an authoritative (or "publike record of 
the country"), but, from 1648, is a " booke onely of coppies," kept 
by the Clerk of the Deputies for the information and convenience 
of the lower House. 

The Journals ordered by the Act of 1648 in the following terms : 

1 Massachusetts Colony Kecords, ii. 259. 


" That the secritary & clarke for the Deputies shall briefly enter 
into theire journalls respectiuely the titles of all bills, orders, 
lawes, petitions, &c, that shalbe psented & read amongst them, 
what are referd to committees, & what are voted negatively or 
affirmatively," are not known to be extant. Mr. William P. 
Upham says that a few leaves now among the files of the Supreme 
Judicial Court may be fragments of one of these Journals. 

From what has been presented above, it appears that from the 
time of the separation of the two Houses in 1644 down to 1657, 
when the Records kept by the Clerk of the Deputies cease, two 
contemporaneous records of the General Court or the Common- 
wealth are preserved and printed by Shurtleff, — one being that kept 
by the Secretary " amongst the Magistrates' (who is the generall 
officer of the Commonwealth)," constituting the "publicke record 
of the country," making the continuous Record found in Shurt- 
leff 's second and fourth volumes ; the other being the record kept 
by the Clerk of the House of Deputies, described as a " booke only 
of coppies," but which included minutes of business introduced 
into the House, that either did not receive or require approval 
by the Magistrates, and therefore not entered in the " publicke 
record of the country." This accounts for what is Shurtleff's 
third volume, running parallel with the second and part of the 
fourth volume, and each containing substantially the same matter, 
with different arrangement and verbal rendering, and the occa- 
sional entry of an item in one Record not found in the other. 

The fourth and fifth volumes of the Shurtleff collection contain 
the continuous Records of the General Court from 1650 to the May 
session of 1686, when the Colony came under the sway of a Royal 
Commission, with Joseph Dudley as President. 

The unfortunate plan adopted by Dr. Shurtleff to remedy certain 
deficiencies in the text of the first issue of Vols. I. and II. of the 
Records, is fully set forth by Mr. Whitmore in his " Bibliographical 
Sketch of the Laws of the Massachusetts Colony." It appears that 
soon after the publication of the first edition the contemporaneous 
copy of the Records, now preserved in the Public Library, came 
to Dr. Shurtleff's hands, and from that he was able to supply cer- 
tain gaps in the original Records. A new issue of the Shurtleff 
edition was authorized about this time ; and to introduce the newly- 
discovered material, Dr. Shurtleff caused the stereotyped plates of 


Vols. I. and II. to be changed, but without giving any notice on 
the titiepages that any alterations had been made. 

The Records of the Plymouth Colony were also intrusted to 
the editorship of Dr. ShurtlefL It may be here observed that the 
printed titiepages do not correctly represent the editorial work 
performed by Mr. Pulsifer, who superseded Dr. Shurtleff in the 
editorship. The titiepages were printed in advance of the print- 
ing of the volumes, so that Dr. Shurtleff's name appears as an 
editor upon volumes with which he had nothing to do. 

The Bibliography which is now presented will afford a descrip- 
tion of the make-up and order of appearance of the printed collec- 
tions of the several New England States. 


Connecticut Colony. 

The Public Records of the Colony of Connecticut, 

Prior to the Union with New Haven Colony, May, 1665 ; transcribed 
and published (in accordance with a resolution of the General Assembly) 
under the Supervision of the Secretary of State, with occasional Notes, 
and an Appendix. By J. Hammond Trumbull. 

[Vol. I.] Hartford, 1850. vii, (1), 604, (1) pp. 7 plates of fac-similes. 


Contents. Records of the General and Particular courts, from April, 
1G36, to December, 1649; Records of the General Court, from February, 
1650, to May, 1665 ; Record of Wills and Inventories, 1640 to 1649 ; Code 
of Laws established by the General Court, May, 1650. Appendix : Letter 
from Sir William Boswell, relating to the encroachments of the Dutch, 
1641-2 ; A coppie of y e combination of Southampton w th Hartford ; The 
agreement [of Connecticut] with Fenwick [relative to jurisdiction of the 
river Towns] ; Claims of Massachusetts to the Pequot country; Letter from 
Connecticut to Easthampton [relative to witchcraft case of Jos. Garlick 
and wife] ; The settlement with Capt. John Cullick ; Abstract of the Will 
of George Fenwick ; Letter to the Commissioners of the United Colonies, 
complaining of affronts received from the Narragansetts, 1660; Letters 
respecting Governor Hopkins's Legacy; The Charter of 1662; Petition of 
Mrs. Cullick to the General Court, in May, 1663; List of Documents relat- 
ing to the Union with New Haven. 

Note. — " Fac-similes of the autographs of members of the first Court of Election 
under the Constitution of 1G39, and of Magistrates chosen at the Union of the Colonies, 
in 1665, have been prepared with all possible care and accuracy, from originals. . . . 
Facsimiles of portions of the original records, in the hand writing of each of the secre- 
taries who held otlice prior to the Union, have also been introduced." 


[Vol. II.] From 1665 to 1678; with the Journal of the Council of 
War, 1675 to 1678. Hartford, 1852. iv, 610 pp. 

Contents. The Charter of Connecticut ; Records of the General Court 
from May, 1665, to October, 1669 ; May, 1670, to October, 1677 ; Journal 
and Correspondence of the Council, 1675-1677. Appendix : Reports of the 
Committee appointed to hear Uncas's complaints, 1665 ; Tawtanimo's grants 
to Richard Baldwin, 1659-60 ; Letters from Charles II., to Connecticut, 
1666 ; Correspondence with Massachusetts, respecting a Synod, 1667 ; List 
of Freemen in the several towns, October, 1669: Hartford; Windsor; 
Wethersfield ; Farmington ; Fairfield ; Stratford ; Norwalk ; Saybrook ; 
New London; Stonington ; Norwich; New Haven; Milford; Branford ; 
Guilford; Killingworth ; Stamford; Haddam ; Abstracts [etc.] of Docu- 
ments relating to Rhode Island boundary, 1665-1677; The mortgaged 
Lands : Major Atherton and his partners, 1659-1683 ; Lands granted by 
Massachusetts, in the Pequot country, 1670; The rumored Indian Plot of 
1669; Proceedings of the Commissioners to establish the Rhode Island 
boundary, June, 1670; Correspondence with Massachusetts respecting the 
Boundary line, 1671-1673 ; New London and Lyme Riot, 1670 ; Letter from 
the King announcing the Declaration of War with the States General, 1672 ; 
Hostilities with the Dutch, 1673-4; The Laws of 1672-3 (titlepage and 
preface, with description of the volume printed in 1673); Claims of Gov. 
Andross, 1674-5 ; Laws for the Pequots, 1675 ; Stonington petition, 1675 ; 
Gov. Andross at Saybrook, 1675 ; The King's letter respecting William 
Harris and his claim to Pawtuxet lands, 1675; Report of a Committee about 
Narragansett Lands, June, 1677 ; Letters from Rev. James Fitch, respecting 
Uncas and the Surrenderee, 1678. 

[Vol. III.] From May, 1678 to June, 1689 ; with Notes and an Ap- 
pendix comprising such Documents from the State Archives, and other 
Sources, as illustrate the History of the Colony during the Administration 
of Sir Edmund Andros. Hartford, 1859. xiii, (1), 538 pp. 

Contents. Proceedings of the General Court, from May, 1678, to Octo- 
ber, 1687 ; Interruption of Charter Government, by Sir Edmund Andros ; 
Records of the May court, 1689 ; June court, 1689. Appendix. 

Note. — The Appendix comprises one hundred and forty-two items arranged chro- 
nologically from 1678 to 1689. The chief documents there printed are Heads of inquiry 
to bee sent to the Governor of Conecticutt, with answers thereto, 1680; Articles of 
misdemeanor against Connecticut, by Edward Randolph, 1685, with Order in Council; 
Extracts from " Will and Doom, or the Miseries of Connecticut," by Gershom Bulkeley ; 
Laws enacted by Governor Andros and his Council, 1687 ; Extracts from the Records 
of the Commissioners of the United Colonies. 

[Vol. IV.] From August, 1689, to May, 1706 ; transcribed and edited 
by Charles J. Hoadly. Hartford, 1868. vi, 574 pp. 

Note. — "The following pages contain the records [of the General Court] from 
August, 1689, to the close of the May session, 1706, being the remainder from page 204 



of the third manuscript volume of Records of the Colony of Connecticut. . . . The 
Council .Journal from May 30th, 16%, to May, 1698, . . . has heen included in this vol- 
ume. . . . Other matters of interest in tliis volume are the papers relative to the visit 
of Col. Fletcher to Hartford, in Octoher, 1693, for the purpose of presenting his claims 
to the command of the Connecticut Militia. . . . The incorporation and settlement of 
quite a Dumber of new towns, and the division of some towns into villages and dis- 
tinct ecclesiastical societies, which at a later day became towns, may also he specified." 
Preface. On page 76 is a note relative to a trial for witchcraft in 1692. This was she 
last trial in Connecticut for the imaginary crime. 

[Vol. V.] From October, 1706, to October, 1716, with the Council 
Journal from October, 1710, to February, 1717. Hartford, 1870. v, (1), 
612 pp. 

Note. — " The present publication contains the whole of Volume IV. of the manu- 
script Kecords of the Colony of Connecticut, and the first sixty-five pages of Volume V. 
It contains also, inserted in chronological order between sessions of the General Assem- 
bly, the Records of the Governor and Council from October 30th, 1710, to February 19th, 
1716-17." Includes measures adopted for raising troops for the Expedition against 
Canada, Boundary transactions, acts regarding the Currency, Bills of Credit, etc. 

[Vol. VI.] From May, 1717, to October, 1725, with the Council 
Journal from May, 1717, to April, 1726. Hartford, 1872. iv, 602 pp. 

Note. — " This volume . . . continues the publication of the fifth volume of the manu- 
script Records of the Colony of Connecticut, from page 66 to 514, inclusive, embracing 
the period between May, 1717, and the close of the October session of the General 
Assembly in 1725. It contains also the record of the acts of the Governor and Council 
from May, 1717, to April, 1726. Preface. 

[Vol. VII.] From May, 1726, to May, 1735, inclusive. Hartford, 
1873. iv, 610 pp. Fac-simile of " Three shillings bill" issued by New 
London Societies united for trade and commerce, 1732. 

Note. — This volume contains the remainder of Volume V. of the manuscript 
Records of the Colon// of Connecticut, from page 515, covering period from May, 1726, to 
the end of May session, 1730; the first 223 pages of Volume VI., continuing the records 
to the end of May session, 1735; and the Journal of the Governor and Council from 
May, 1726, to February, 1727-8. The Appendix contains Order of the King in Council, 
upon the appeal of John Winthrop against Thomas Lechmere, annulling the law of 
Connecticut entitled " An Act for the settlement of Intestate Estates." Queries relat- 
ing to the Colony of Connecticut, from the Board of Trade and Plantations, with the 
answers thereto, 1729-1730. 

[Vol. VIII.] From October, 1735, to October, 1743, inclusive. 
Hartford, 1874. (4), 604 pp. 

NOTE. — "This publication contains from page 224 of Volume VI. of the manuscript 
Records of the Colony of Connecticut. . . . The Journal of the Governor and Council for 
the years embraced in this volume is not known to be extant." Prefatory Note. 


[Vol. IX.] May, 1744, to November, 1750, inclusive. Hartford, 

1876. (4), 621 pp. 

Note. — "This volume contains the remainder of Volume VII. of the manuscript 
Records of the Colony of Connecticut from page 222, together with the first fifty-one 
pages of Volume VIII., and covers the period from May, 1744, to the death of Governor 
Law and the election of Governor Wolcott, in November, 1750." The Appendix con- 
tains "Proceedings of the Privy Council on the appeals of Samuel Clark against 
Thomas Tousey and others, touching the Law of Intestate Estates, 1737-45; Queries 
from the Board of Trade to the Governor and Company of Connecticut, with answers 
thereto, 1784-9." 

[Vol. X.] May, 1751, to February, 1757, inclusive. Hartford, 

1877. (4), 652 pp. 

Note. — "The following pages complete the publication of the eighth manuscript 
volume of the Records of the Colony of Connecticut, and contain the acts of twenty-one 
sessions of the General Assembly." The Journals of the Governor and Council, Com- 
mittees of War, and of the General Assembly are wanting for 1751-1757. The Appen- 
dix contains the Census of 1756 ; Queries from the Board of Trade to the Governor and 
Company of Connecticut, with the answers thereto, 1755-6. 

[Vol. XL] May, 1757, to March, 1762, inclusive. Hartford, 

1880. (4), 662 pp. 

Note. — This and the preceding volume contain acts illustrating the participation of 
Connecticut in raising troops for the Trench and Indian Wars, giving appointments of 
officers, appropriations, etc. The Journals of the Governor and Council, Committees of 
War, and of the General Assembly are wanting. The Appendix contains Answers 
to queries from the Board of Trade, 1761-2. 

[Vol. XII.] May, 1762, to October, 1767, inclusive. Hartford, 

1881. (4), 698 pp. 

Note. — The Journals of the Governor and Council, and of the General Assembly, 
are wanting. The Proceedings relative to the Stamp Act are recorded in this volume. 
The Appendix consists of a reprint of the Tract entitled Reasons why the British Colo- 
nies, in America, should not be charged with Internal Taxes, by Authority of Parlia- 
ment; Humbly offered, for Consideration, In Behalf of the Colony of Connecticut. 
New Haven : Printed by B. Mecom, M,DCC,LXIV. 

[Vol. XIII.] May, 1768, to May, 1772, inclusive. Hartford, 1885. 
(4), 689 pp. Folded plate: Chart of Saybrook Bar, by Abner Parker, 

Note. — "This book contains the concluding part of Volume X. of the manuscript 
Public Records of the Colony of Connecticut, from page 312, and the first 147 pages of 
Volume XL The Council Journal before May, 1770, is not known to be extant." The 
portion from May, 1770, to 1772, is here printed. The Journals of the General Assem- 
bly are wanting. 

[Vol. XIV.] October, 1772, to April, 1775, inclusive. Hartford, 

1887. 4, 534 pp. 

Note. — "The record of eight sessions of the General Assembly is in this book." 
The Journals of the General Assembly are wanting for this period. The Journal of the 
Gov aor and Council fails after October, 1773. 


The Appendix contains reprints of the following tracts : — 

The Susquehaunah Case [1774]; Report of the Commissioners appointed by the 
General Assembly of this Colony, to treat with the Proprietaries of Pennsylvania, Re- 
Bpecting the Boundaries of this Colony and that Province. Norwich: Printed by Green 
& Spooner, 1774; An Account of the Number of inhabitants in the Colony of Con- 
necticut, January 1, 1774; together with an Account of the Number of Inhabitants, 
taken January 1, 1756. Hartford: Printed by Ebeuezer Watson, M,1)CC,LXXIV. ; 
Heads of Inquiry relative to the Present State and Condition of His Majesty's Colony 
of Connecticut, Signified by His Majesty's Secretary of State, in his Letter of 
the 5th July, 1773; With the Answers thereto. NewLondon : Printed by T. Green, 

[Vol. XV.] May, 1775, to June, 1776, inclusive, with the Journal 
of the Council of Safety from June 7, 1775, to October 2, 1776, and an 
Appendix containing some Council Proceedings 1663-1710. Hartford, 
1890. iv, 617 pp. 

Note. — The appointments of Revolutionary officers are recorded in this volume, 
with the measures adopted for raising troops, and other acts in connection with the 
Revolutionary officers. 

State of Connecticut. 
The Public Records of the State of Connecticut, 

[Vol. I.] From October, 1776, to February, 1778, inclusive, with 
the Journal of the Council of Safety from October 11, 1776, to May 
6, 1778, inclusive, and an Appendix. Published in accordance with a 
Resolution of the General Assembly, by Charles J. Hoadly, LL.D. 
Hartford, 1894. iv, 653 pp. 

Note. — Contains "about one half of the first manuscript volume of the Records of 
the State of Connecticut, and all of the first volume of the Journal of the Council 
of Safety which was not printed in the fifteenth volume of Colonial Records of 
Connecticut." Preface. 

The Appendix comprises Journal of the Convention held at Providence, December 
25, 1776, to January 3, 1777, of delegates from New England States to form a union for 
purposes of military defence, to regulate and improve the currency, to establish a scale 
of prices for commodities to prevent the exaction of exorbitant charges for necessities 
to Soldiers; Journal of Springfield Convention, July, 1777, of "Committees from the 
States of New Hampshire, Massachusetts Bay, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and New 
York, for the purpose of holding a conference respecting the state of the paper currency 
of the said governments," etc. ; " Journal of the Commissioners of New Hampshire, 
Khode Island and Providence plantations, and Connecticut at New Haven, on the 15th 
of January and continued by adjournment until the 20th day of the same month, 1778, 
when being joyned by the Commissioners of Massachusetts Bay, New York, and New 
Jersey " they proceeded to consider measures for regulating the price of labor, manu- 
factures, internal produce, and commodities imported from foreign parts, also to regu- 
late the charges of innholders. 


[Vol. II.] From May, 1778, to April, 1780, inclusive, with the 
Journal of the Council of Safety from May 18, 1778, to April 23, 1780, 
and an Appendix. Hartford, 1895. iv, 607 pp. 8vo. 

Note. — " Comprises the record of eight sessions of the General Assembly of Con- 
necticut between May, 1778, and May, 1780, and contains the remaining hitherto 
unprinted portion of Volume one of the manuscript Records of the State of Connecticut., 
with the April Session of 1780 from Volume two. The records of the Council of Safety 
are also included, arranged in the same manner as in the former printed volume. The 
record of the ordinary Council is not known to exist. From May, 1779, the Journals of 
the Lower House of the Assembly are in our archives. The Journals of the Upper 
House are not preserved." Preface. 

The Appendix contains Depositions in regard to the Invasion of New Haven, Fair- 
field, and Norwalk, in July, 1779 ; Proceedings of the Hartford Convention of October, 
1779, of "Commissioners of the several States of New Hampshire, Massachusetts, 
Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, Connecticut, and New York " to regulate the 
currency and the prices of commodities, etc. ; Proceedings of the Philadelphia Conven- 
tion, January, 1780, of " Commissioners from the States of New Hampshire, Massa- 
chusetts Bay, Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, 
Delaware, and Maryland, appointed for the purpose of considering the expediency of 
limiting prices/' 

New Haven Colony. 

Records of the Colony and Plantation of New Haven, from 1638 
to 1649. Transcribed and edited in accordance with a Resolution of 
the General Assembly of Connecticut, with occasional Notes and an 
Appendix by Charles J. Hoadly. 

[Vol. I.] Hartford, 1857. vii, (1),547 pp. 8vo. 

Contents. Indian deeds of the Plantation of New Haven ; The names 
of all the Freemen of the Courte of Newhaven; New Haven Colony 
Records. Appendix: Correspondence of Governor Eaton and of Deputy 
Governor Goodyeare with Governor Stuyvesant and (one letter) Governor 
Winthrop concerning Dutch claims to New Haven and Connecticut. 

Note. — " At their first settlement, though within the limits of the old Connecticut 
Patent, the plantations of New Haven, Guilford, and Milford, intended to be, if possible, 
separate and distinct governments, but finding themselves singly too weak, early in the 
spring of the year 1643, they confederated with New Haven, which had already by the 
purchase and settlement of Stamford, Yennycook or Southold, and Totoket or Bran- 
ford, become the most considerable in size and influence, and thus was formed the Juris- 
diction of New Haven. The present volume contains the records of the Colony of New 
Haven while it remained distinct, the beginning of the records of the Jurisdiction, and 
the records of the Town or Plantation up to the year 1650. From April, 1644, to May, 
1653, the records of the Jurisdiction are lost, save that in this volume we have the pro- 
ceedings of a Court of Magistrates, June 14th, 1646, and a Court of Election October 
27th, 1646." Introduction. 


Records of the Colony or Jurisdiction of New Haven, from May, 
1653, to the Union, together with the New Haven Code of 1656. 
Transcribed and edited in accordance with a Resolution of the Gen- 
eral Assembly of Connecticut by Charles J. Hoadly. 
[Vol. II.] Hartford, 1858. iv, 626 pp. 

Note. — " Tlie present volume comprises all the Records of the Jurisdiction of New 
Haven now known to exist, except the few entries in the ' Records of the Colony and 
Plantation of New Haven,' printed in 1857. . . . The New Haven laws are here given 
from the original printed copy belonging to the American Antiquarian Society." The 
book is of great rarity and perhaps unique. The title is "New Haven's Settling in 
New England. — And some Lawes for Government. Published for the use of that 
Colony, . . . London: Printed by M. S. for Livewell Chapman, 1656." 


Documentary History of the State of Maine. 

Edited by William Willis. 

Vol. I. Containing a History of the Discovery of Maine. By J. G. 

Kohl. With an Appendix on the Voyages of the Cabots. By M. 

D'Avezac, of Paris. Published by the Maine Historical Society, aided 

by Appropriations from the State. Portland, 1869. (2), viii, (2), 10 — 

535 pp. 8vo. 

Contents. A history of the discovery of the East Coast of North Amer- 
ica, particularly the Coast of Maine, from the Northmen in 990 to the 
Charter of Gilbert in 1578. By J. G. Kohl. Illustrated by Copies of the 
earliest Maps and Charts: Physical features of the Gulf and Coast of 
Maine; Discoveries of the Northmen in North-eastern America during the 
Middle Ages; Vinland Voyages of the Zeni; Sea chart of the Zeni; Charts 
of the Northmen : Map of the North Atlantic Ocean, drawn by Sigardus 
Stephanius, 1570; Map by Gudbrandus Torlacius, 1006; — English trading 
expeditions from Bristol and other English ports, toward the Northwest, 
principally to Iceland, during the 14th and 15th centuries : John of Kolno; 
Expeditions of Columbus prior to 1492 ; Voyage of John and Sebastian 
Cabot in 1497; Voyage of Sebastian Cabot in 1498; Map of Behaim, 1492; 
Map of Juan de la Cosa, 1500; Chart of the new world, by Johann Ruysch, 
1508; The globe of Schoner, 1520 ; Expeditions of Caspar and Miguel 
Cortereal to the north-eastern coast of America, in 1500-1503; Portuguese 
chart of the Coasts of Newfoundland, Labrador, and Greenland, about 1504; 
Pedro Reinel's chart of Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, and Greenland, about 
1505; Portuguese chart of Florida, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, Labrador, 
and Greenland, made about 1520 ; — English voyages to Newfoundland in 
the beginning of the ICth century; Portuguese fishermen on Newfoundland 
Banks ; Spanish voyages to Newfoundland, Juan Dornelos, Juan de Agra- 
nionte, and Sebastian Cabot, 1500, 1511, 1515; French voyages after Cor- 


tereal ; English voyage to the North-west, said to have been undertaken 
under the command of Sebastian Cabot and Sir Thomas Pert, in 1517; 
Charts of the first French discoveries in " Terre Neuve : " Map of New 
France, by Jacomo di Gastaldi, 1550 ; " Terra Nueva," by Girolamo Rus- 
celli, 1561; Spanish expeditions along the east coast of Florida from 
Columbus to Ay lion, 1492-1520; Expeditions to the East coast of North 
America under the French, by Giovanni da Verrazano in 1524; Expedition 
of Estevan Gomez along the East coast of North America in 1525 ; Expedi- 
tion of two English ships, the Mary of Guilford and the Samson, under the 
command of John Rut, 1527; Charts from Verrazano : Chart by Michael Lok, 
1582 ; Map of America, by Baptista Agnese, 1536 ; On four maps of North 
America, by different authors between 1530 and 1544 : Ptolemy, 1530 ; Rus- 
celli's map, 1544 ; Map by Diego Homem, 1540 ; North America from a 
Portolano, 1536 ; Charts to Gomez : Chart by Diego Ribero in 1529 ; Chart 
of the East coast of North America, by Alonzo de Chaves, in 1536, and 
Oviedo's Description of the coast in 1537 ; French expeditions to Canada in 
1534-1543, and Hore's voyage, 153G ; First voyage of Jacques Cartier in 
1534 ; Second voyage, 1535 ; The voyage of Master Hore and other Eng- 
lishmen to Cape Breton and Newfoundland in 1536 ; Expeditions of Jean 
Francois de La Roque de Roberval, and Jacques Cartier to Canada in 1540 
and 1543 ; Chart of Newfoundland and the Gulf of St. Lawrence, by Gaspar 
Viegas, 1534 ; Chart of Canada and the east coast of the U. S. from a map 
of the world in 1543 ; Chart of Nicholas Vallard de Dieppe, 1543 ; On the 
engraved map of the world said to have been made by Sebastian Cabot 
in 1544, and the voyage said to have been made by John and Sebastian 
Cabot, in 1494 ; Diego Homem's chart, 1558 ; Mercator's map, 1569 ; Expe- 
dition of Lucas Vasquez de Ay lion to the country Chicora (Carolina), in 
1526 ; The Expeditions of Ferdinando de Soto, Diego Maldonado, and 
Gomez Arias, 1538-1543 ; The Expeditions under Ribault and Laudonniere 
to Florida, and the Spanish and English undertakings connected with them, 
in 1562-1574; Yillegagnon's expedition, 1555; Thevet's expedition, 1556; 
Ribault's first voyage to the East coast of Florida, Georgia, and South Caro- 
lina, in 1562; The fate of the French settlement at Port Royal, 1562-1563; 
Laudonniere's expedition, 1564 ; Voyage of Capt. John Hawkins along the 
coast of North America, from Florida to Newfoundland, in 1565 ; Third 
Expedition of the French to Florida under command of Jean Ribault, in 
1565 ; Expeditions of Don Pedro Menendez de Aviles on the coast of Flor- 
ida, in 1565-1567 ; Expedition of Dominique de Gourgues to Florida, in 
1567-68 ; A Spanish survey of the East coast of Florida, in 1573, by Pedro 

Appendix : A Letter on the Voyages of John and Sebastian Cabot, by 
M. D'Avezac of Paris. Index. 

Vol. II. Containing a Discourse on Western Planting, written in the 
Year 1584, by Richard Hakluyt. With a Preface and an Introduction 
by Leonard Woods, LL.D. Edited, with Notes in the Appendix, by 
Charles Deane. Published by the Maine Historical Society, aided by 


Appropriations from the State. Cambridge, 1877. lxi, (3), 253 pp. 
Plates: Fac- simile of the title-page of the Discourse from the MS.; 4 
folded Plates of fac-similes : of Heads of Chapters found in the Public 
Record office ; of first Page of Letter of Hakluyt to Walsinghani, 
Apr. 7, 1585. 

Contents. Xote of the Standing Committee ; Editorial note, by Charles 
Deane ; Preface, by Leonard Woods [giving an account of the discovery of 
the manuscript of the Discourse and its identification with the narrative 
presented to Queen Elizabeth as " Mr. Rawley's Voyage " and with the title 
" Sir Walter Raleigh's Voyage to the West Indies " to Walsingham in 1585] ; 
A particuler discourse concerning the greate necessitie and manifolde com- 
odyties that are like to growe to this Realme of Englande by the Westerne 
discoueries lately attempted, written in the yere 1584, by Richarde Hackluyt 
of Oxforde, at the requeste and direction of the righte worshipf ull Mr Walter 
Rayhly, nowe Knight, before the comynge home of his twoo barkes, and is 
devided into XXI chapiters, the titles whereof followe in the nexte leafe. 
Appendix: Xotes to Hakluyt's Discourse : Xote on the Title-page; Xotes on 
the " Heads of Chapters ; " Xotes on the Text of the Discourse. 

Note. — It is thought that Hakluyt made three and possibly four copies of his " Dis- 
course." The first copy was given to Queen Elizabeth, the second was written for Secre- 
tary Walsingham, the third for one whom he calls his "Worship" (possibly Sir Philip 
Sidney), and a fourth the original of the one here printed, and which is preserved in 
the collection of Sir Thomas Phillipps at Cheltenham. The original work was written 
in 1584, and the first copies contained only twenty chapters, as is shown by the "Heads 
of Chapters," found in the Public Record office, one copy of which bore the title, " Sir 
Walter Raleigh's Voyage to the West Indies," and another " Mr. Rawley's Voyage." 
These are not known to be extant. The copy here reprinted contains an additional 
chapter and a different title-page as given above, and was probably published in 1585. 

Vol. III. Containing the Trelawny Papers. Edited, and illustrated 
with Historical Notes and an Appendix, by James Phinney Baxter, A.M. 
Published by the Maine Historical Society, aided by Appropriations from 
the State. Portland, 1884. xxxi, (1), 520 pp. Illustrated. Folded 
maps and plans. Fac-similes. 

Contents. Memoir of Robert Trelawny; The Trelawny pedigrees; 
Fac-similes of autographs; the Trelawny Papers: Patent to Robert Tre- 
lawny and others, Dec. 1, 1631 ; Patent to Thomas Commack, Xov. 1, 16-31 ; 
Power of attorney to John Winter and Thomas Pomeroy, Jan. 18, 1631 ; 
Correspondence, July 23, 1632 — Apr. 4, 1809; Appendix: Will of Robert 
Trelawny, Senior, June 30, 1627; Robert Trelawny's first will, Oct. 26, 1610; 
Robert Trelawny's last will, August 27, 1643 ; Sir Jonathan Trelawny ; 
The Song of the Western men ; John Winter to Robert Trelawny, April, 
1634, May 5, 1634 ; John Winter's seal ; Charges on Xewfoundland fish ; 
Pedigree of Sir Ferdinando Gorges ; The Great Seal of the Council for Xew 
England ; Account of Jordan and Ridgeway ; the Will of Robert Jordan ; 


Note. — The Trelawny patent covered Richmond's Island and the whole of Cape 
Elizabeth. John Winter, acting for Trelawny, took possession of the grant in 1632 and 
built a house in 1633 upon Richmond's Island. Winter dispossessed Cleeve, who had 
settled upon the main land opposite Richmond's Island, and later laid claim under the 
Trelawny patent to Cleeve's grant upon the Casco (including Portland), but was unsuc- 
cessful in his design. The Trelawny Papers include the records of the dispute with 
Cleeve. The Papers are largely concerned with Winter's reports of his transactions at 
the plantation on Richmond's Island. The Trelawny interest in the property, through 
legal manipulations, was finally annihilated, and the Winter heirs came into complete 

Vol. IV. Containing the Baxter Manuscripts. Edited by James 
Phinney Baxter, A.M. Published by the Maine Historical Society, 
aided by Appropriations from the State. Portland, 1889. xvi, 506 pp. 

Note. — " The documents in this volume have been gathered by me during many 
years, from the archives of Massachusetts, the office of the Public Records in London, 
and the Bureau of Marine and Colonies in Paris." — Editor. Comprises papers on Maine 
history covering the period from 1629 to Oct. 7, 1689, principally illustrating the disputed 
jurisdiction of the Province by Massachusetts and Gorges. Their general character is 
indicated by the following list of the more important or extensive papers : Grant to 
Thomas Lewis and Rich. Bonython, of land at Sagadahoc, Feb. 28, 1629; Documents 
on Massachusetts jurisdiction over Kittery, 1651-52; List of freemen sworn at York, 

1652 ; Commission appointed to settle the civil government at Wells and Cape Porpoise, 

1653 ; Submission of People of Wells, Saco, and Cape Porpoise to Massachusetts, 1653; 
A Short view of Ann Mason's touching her lands in New England, 1653 ; Depositions 
relative to case of Hugh Gunnison, at Kittery ; Dispute between Edward Godfrey and 
the town of York, 1654-55; Petition of York, Kittery, Wells, Saco, and Cape Porpoise 
to Oliver Cromwell, 1656; Submission of Black Point, Blue Point, Spurwinke, and Casco 
Bay to Massachusetts jurisdiction, 1658; Petition of Falmouth, May 30, 1660; Peti- 
tion of George Cleeve concerning his claims to land at Cape Porpoise, Saco, Wells, and 
Falmouth; Eequest of the inhabitants of Scarborough, 1661; Petition of Wells con- 
cerning Rev. Seth Fletcher, 1661 ; George Cleeve vs. Robert Jordan ; Documents, relative 
to Gorges's claims to the Province of Maine, 1664-65 ; Petition of inhabitants of Cape 
Porpus, Apr. 28, 1668; Petition of Wells, 1668; Petition of Falmouth, 1668; Repre- 
sentation of S r Lewis Kirk concerning Accadie, 1667 ; The title of the English to 
Acadia, or Nova Scotia, and the comodities it yields, 1667 ; A resume; an abstract of 
accounts of the title to lauds in Nova Scotia ; Order of commissioners forbidding the 
exercise of jurisdiction over the Province of Maine by Massachusetts or Gorges, with 
other documents on the subject, 1665; Report of His Majestie's commissioners upon 
the colonies of Connecticut, Rhode Island, New Plymouth, Massachusetts, New Hamp- 
shire, Maine, 1665; Claims of John Littlebury, 1669; Petition of Kittery, 1673; Re- 
turne of the coihitte apointed by the Genii Court, to consider of the matter p e sented 
relating to the Province of Mayne, 1678; A Declaration of the Inhabitants of the 
Province of Main, 1679, in regard to Gorges's claim ; Indenture between Tho s Danforth 
and Captain Edward Tyng and others, 1684, in regard to holders under Gorges's grants ; 
Memoire sur l'etat de la situation et la disposition en laquelle sont les habitans du 
pays de l'Arcadie ; Papers relative to operations at Falmouth, 1689. 




Massachusetts Bay Colony. 

Records of the Governor and Company of Massachusetts Bay in 

New England. 

Printed by order of the Legislature. Edited by Nathaniel B. Shurt- 


Vol. I. 1628-1641. Boston, 1853. xv, 479 pp. 4to. 

Contents. The Charter of the Colony of Massachusetts Bay in New 
England, 1628-9 ; The Records of the Governor and Company of the Mas- 
sachusetts Bay in New England, 1628-1630 (prior to arrival in America) ; 
The Records of the Colony of the Massachusetts Bay in New England, 
1630-1641 ; Miscellaneous Records : Coppies of y e Oathes appertaining^ 
to y e New England Companye ; John Pratt's Answer to the Court ; Court 
Order, April 30, 1629, May 21, 1629 ; Freemen of the Colony of the Mas- 
sachusetts Bay in New England, 1631-1641. Appendix: Letters from the 
Governor and Company of Massachusetts Bay in New England: Matthew 
Cradock, Feb. 16, 1628-9 ; First Letter of Instructions from the Governor 
and Company, April 17, 1629 ; Second Letter of Instructions, May 28, 1629 ; 
Letter from the Governor and Company to the Ministers, Oct. 16, 1629; 
Letter to Gov. Endecott, Oct. 16, 1629. General Index; Index of Freemen, 

Note. — There were two editions of this volume issued without any change in the 
title-pages. The second edition contained the following changes : to include the new 
material supplied by the Barlow manuscript ; ten pages, numbered 37 a to 37j, were in- 
serted, and on page 346 the page was filled out with new matter. 

Vol. II. 1642-1649. Boston, 1853. vii, 344 pp. 

Contents. The Records of the Colony of the Massachusetts Bay, 1642- 
1649 ; Miscellaneous Records : Freemen of the Colony of the Massachusetts 
Bay, 1642-1649. General Index ; Index of Freemen, 1642-1649. 

Note. — There were two editions of this volume, as well as of the first volume, issued 
without any change in the titlepage of the second. " In Volume II. (which begins, 
in the first edition, with page 3) two whole pages were inserted, — numbers 1 and 2, and 
the first half of page 3. The former page 3 was cancelled, the two bottom lines . . . being 
carried over to page 4, and the spaces on page 4 being readjusted, so that page 4 ends 
alike in both editions." — W. H. Whitman* 

Vol. III. 1644-1657. Boston, 1854. xiii,"(3), 510 pp. 

Contents. The Records of the House of Deputies, 1644-1657 (in fact 
the Records of the Colony, as kept by the Clerk of the Deputies). 

Vol. IV., Part I. 1650-1660. Boston, 1854. v, (3), 518 pp. 

Contents. Records of the Colony of the Massachusetts Bay, May, 1650- 
Dec. 19, 1660; Miscellaneous Records : Freemen of the Colony, 1650-1060; 
General Index ; Index of Freemen, 1650-1660. 


Vol. IV., Part II. 1661-1674. Boston, 1854. v, (3), 647 pp. 

Contents. Records of the Colony of the Massachusetts Bay, May 23, 
1661, to March, 1673-4; Miscellaneous Records: Freemen of the Colony, 
1661-1674 ; General Index ; Index of Freemen, 1661-1674. 

Vol. V. 1674-1686. Boston, 1854. v, (3), 615 pp. 

Contents. Records of the Colony of the Massachusetts Bay, May 27, 1674- 
May, 1686 ; Miscellaneous Records : Grant to William Blathwayt, May 19, 
1680 ; Deputation of William Blathwayt to Edward Randolph ; Certificate 
of appointment of William Dyre, Surveyor-General of Customs; Power of 
Attorney from John Awassamoag, 1684; Deed from John Awassamoag 
and others, Jan. 21, 1684-5 ; Deed from Thomas Awassamoag to Edward 
Rawson, April 21, 1685 ; Freemen of the Colony, 1674-1686 ; General Index ; 
Index of Freemen, 1674-1686. 

Plymouth Colony. 
Records of the Colony of New Plymouth in New England. 

Printed by order of the Legislature of the Commonwealth of Massa- 
chusetts. Edited by Nathaniel B. Shurtleff, M.D. 

Vol. I. Court Orders: 1633-1640. Boston, 1855. xii, (4), 190 pp. 4to. 
Contents. The Names of the Freemen, 1633 ; Acts and Passages of Court, 
and Grants of Land, from y e year 1632 until the year 1640. 

Vol. II. Court Orders: 1641-1651. Boston, 1854. v, (3), 202 pp. 
Vol. III. CourtOrders: 1651-1661. Boston, 1855. v, (3), 250 pp. 
Note. — "The third volume of the Court Orders of the Colony of New Plymouth is 
contained in a manuscript of about three hundred and forty pages, all in the handwriting 
of Mr. Nathaniel Morton, Secretary of the Colony. It comprises the records of the lat- 
ter part of the administration of Governor William Bradford, and the first part of that 
of Governor Thomas Prence." 

Vol. IV. Court Orders : 1661-1668. Boston, 1855. v, (3), 218 pp. 

Note. — "The manuscript of the fourth volume of Court Orders of the Colony of 

New Plymouth ... is entirely in the well-known chirography of Mr. Nathaniel Morton. 

. It embraces a period of seven years, during the whole of which time Mr. Thomas 

Prence was Governor of the Colony." 

Vol. V. Court Orders: 1668-1678. Boston, 1856. v, (3), 315 pp. 

Note.— Contains the Acts of the General Court and the Court of Assistants, with 

rants of land, and other entries of a more miscellaneous character, among which will 

e found a list of Freemen on May 29, 1670. Gov. Prence's administration ended 

March, 1673 ; during the remainder of the period covered by this volume Josiah Winslow 

as Governor. Includes record of proceedings in regard to King Philip's War. 

Vol. VI. Court Orders : 1678-1691. Boston, 1856. v, (3), 300 pp. 

Note. — During the period covered by this volume, the Governors of the Colony were 

■bsiah Winslow, who died in office, Dec. 18, 1680, and Thomas Hinckley, who served in 

■hat capacity until the Union with Massachusetts, in 1692, with the exception of the 

Beriod of the Andros usurpation. 



Vol. VII. Judicial Acts : 1636-1692. Boston, 1857. v, (3), 339 pp. 

Note. — " This volume comprises the Record of the Judicial Acts of the General 
Court and Court of Assistants of the Colony of New Plymouth. . . . The first Act 
recorded bears date the third of January, 1636-7, and the last the fifth of April, 1692, 
consequently extending until the union of the Massachusetts and Plymouth colonies." 
Prior to 1637, the acts of this character were incorporated in the records of Court 

Vol. VIII. Miscellaneous Records: 1633-1689. Boston, 1857. 
v, (3), 283 pp. 

Contents. Records of Births, Marriages, Deaths, and Burials in the sev- 
eral towns of the Colony of New Plymouth, as they were returned by the 
respective town clerks, 1647-1687 (Yarmouth, Plymouth, Sandwich, East- 
ham, Scituate, Taunton, Barnstable, Swansey, Rehoboth, Marshfield) ; 
Treasury Accounts, 1658-1686 ; Lists of the Names of Freemen and others 
taken at various times ; Freemen of Plymouth, Duxbury, Scituate, Sand- 
wich, Taunton, Yarmouth, Barnstable, Marshfield, Rehoboth, Nawsett; 
Names of such as have taken the Oath of Fidelitie, 1657, of Marshfield, 
Rehoboth, Barnstable, Sandwich, Scituate, Plymouth, Duxbury, Sandwich, 
Eastham, Bridgewater, Cohannet, Yarmouth, Taunton ; 1643, Ttie Names 
of all the Males that are able to bear armes, Plymouth, Duxbury, Scituate, 
Sandwich, Barnstable, Yarmouth, Taunton ; List of Freemen in the different 
towns, taken about 1658; List of Freemen, taken 1683-4; List of Freemen 
received and admitted, June, 1689. 

Index to Births, Marriages, Deaths, and Burials; Index to Towns, etc.; 
Index to Treasury Accounts, and Names of Freemen. 

Vol. IX. Edited by David Pulsifer. Acts of the Commissioners 
of the United Colonies of New England. Vol. I., 1643-1651. Boston, 
1859. xvi, (8), 237 pp. Facsimiles. 

Contents. Agreement respecting the bounds betwixt Plymouth and 
Massachusetts, 1640 , Articles of Confederation Betweene the Plantacons 
vnder the Goument of the Massachusetts the Plantacons vnder the Goii- 
ment of New Plymouth, the Plantacons under the Goument of Connectacutt. 
and the Goument of New Haven, 1643 ; Acts of the Commissioners, 1643- 
1651 ; The Petition of Humphrey Johnson, and Answer of the Court thereto, 

Vol. X. Acts of the Commissioners of the United Colonies of New 
England. Vol. II., 1653-1679. Boston, 1859. viii, (4), 492 pp. 

Note. — The Appendix contains: "Records of several meetings of the Commission- 
ers, which are omitted from the Plymouth copy ; namely, the informal meeting at 
Plymouth, September, 1652; the special meeting at Hartford, August, 1673; meetings 
at Hartford, September, 1678; at Boston, August, 1679; and at Hartford, September, 
1684," furnished by J. Hammond Trumbull, from the Connecticut Archives ; Documents, 
and Extracts from the Council Records of the Massachusetts Colony, 1644-1650. 


Vol. XL Laws, 1623-1682. Boston, 1861. xi, (1), 274 pp. 
Facsimiles in the text. 

Vol. XII. Deeds, etc. Vol. I., 1620-1651. Book of Indian Rec- 
ords for their Lands. Boston, 1861. vii, (1), 264 pp. Facsimiles. 

Note. — Consists of reprint of the manuscript volume entitled " Plimouth's Great 
Book of Deeds of Lands enrolled from An 1627 to An 1651." 


Provincial Papers. Documents and Records relating to the Prov- 
ince of New-Hampshire, from the earliest period of its Settlement, 

Published by authority of the Legislature of New Hampshire. Com- 
piled and edited by Nathaniel Bouton, D. D. 

Vol. I. Concord, 1867. x, (2), 629 pp. 8vo. 

Contents. The Province of New-Hampshire from 1623 to 1686, prelimi- 
nary Notices by the Editor ; Ancient Grants and other Documents relating to 
the Province, prepared by Samuel D. Bell ; Mason's will ; Dover and Swamp- 
scot patents ; The Wheelwright Deed ; Original Province Papers, contained 
in "Book I. Province Records," 1631-1650 ; Miscellaneous items relating to 
New-Hampshire, between 1629 and 1636 ; Documents and facts relating 
to Settlements in New-Hampshire, from 1631 to 1641, previous to submission 
to the Government of Massachusetts : Portsmouth, Dover ; Names of Stew- 
ards and Servants sent by John Mason into this Province of New- 
Hampshire ; Exeter, Hampton; Exeter combination, 1639; Indian deeds to 
Wheelwright and others, 1638; Exeter First Book of Records; Ancient 
Documents and Records relating to New-Hampshire, subsequent to Massa- 
chusetts' jurisdiction, from 1641 to 1679 (includes documents on Dover and 
Swampscot patents ; Hampton petition, 1643 ; Exeter petition, 1643 ; Bloody 
Point petition, 1644; Dover petitions, 1646, 1652, 1654; Strawberry Bancke 
petitions, 1651, 1653; Petition from Portsmouth, 1654; Witchcraft in New 
Hampshire, 1656 ; Quakers) ; Papers relating to the visit of the King's Com- 
missioners so far as respects New-Hampshire, from Documents relating to 
the Colonial History of New York ; Same from Massachusetts records (includ- 
ing petitions from Portsmouth, Dover, Exeter, etc., regarding Massachusetts 
jurisdiction) ; Portsmouth address concerning the College, 1669 ; Petition of 
Oyster River for a Minister, 1669 ; Answer of Massachusetts to Mason's and 
Gorges's complaints ; Documents relating to Indian troubles at Piscataqua 
and the Eastern parts, from 1675 to 1678 ; Names of Deputies from towns 
in New-Hampshire, to the General Court of Massachusetts, from 1641 to 
1679 ; The Commission constituting a President [John Cutt] and Council 
for the Province of New Hampshire, 1679 ; Province laws ; Address of the 
General Court of New-Hampshire to the King, 1680 ; Witchcraft ; Province 
rate of Hampton, Exeter, Cocheco, Dover Neck, Bloody Point, Portsmouth, 


1G80; Fast proclamation, 1681; Commission of Edward Cranfield, 1682; 
Instructions to Cranfield ; Province laws under Cranfield ; Cranfield's ad- 
ministration; Petition of the Inhabitants of New Hampshire against Robert 
Mason, 1685; Barefoot's administration; Letters or petitions from John 
Hogkins, one of the Sachems of the Penacook Indians ; Hon. Joseph 
Dudley's administration, as President of his Majesty's territory and dominion 
in New-England. Index. 

Vol. II. 1686 to 1722: being Part I. of papers relating to that 
Period. Manchester, 1868. vi, 764 pp. 

Contents. Commission and administration of Sir Edmund Andros ; 
Unsettled state of the Province from April 18, 1689, to 1692 ; Proceedings 
of the people at Hampton, 1689 ; at Dover, Exeter, Portsmouth ; New 
Hampshire petition, Feb. 20, 1689-90 ; Documents relating to Wars with 
the Indians, 1687-1690, including the Massacre at Dover, June, 1689 ; 
Commission and Instructions to Gov. Samuel Allen, 1692 ; Minutes of 
Council, under the administration of Lieut. -Gov. John Usher, 1692-1696 ; 
Custom House returns, 1692 ; Great Island, petition for a Township ; Charter 
of New Castle ; Indian treaty, at Pemaquid, Aug. 11, 1693 ; Massacre at 
Oyster River, 1694 ; Grant of the town of Kingston, 1694 ; Records of 
Council, 1696-1723; Association to stand by the Protestant Succession; 
Commission of Lt.-Gov. Wm. .Partridge ; Submission of the Eastern Indi- 
ans, 1698 ; Commission of the Earl of Bellomont, 1698 ; Papers relating 
to the Earl of Bellomont's Administration, so far as respects New Hamp- 
shire ; Commission of Gov. Joseph Dudley ; Commission of Lieut.-Governor 
John Usher ; Province Seal ; Trial before the Superior Court of Judicature, 
of the Province of New Hampshire, Allen vs. Waldron, 1707; Privateering; 
Instructions to Governor Dudley ; Notice of Joseph Smith ; New Province 
Seal ; Failure of the Expedition against Canada, 1711 ; Treaty of Utrecht, — 
Proclamation ; Notice of Charles Story ; Lieutenant-Governor Yaughan's 
complaint and speech; Commission to Lieutenant-Governor Wentworth ; 
Settlement of Scotch Irish at Nutfield (Londonderry). 

Vol. III. 1692 to 1722: being Part II. of Papers relating to that 
Period, containing the "Journal of the House and General Assembly." 
Manchester, 1869. vii, 853 pp. 

Contents. Journal of the Council and General Assembly, 1692-1722; 
Estimates of cost of building a fort at New Castle, 1700 ; Laws of the 
Province of New-Hampshire, from 1692-1702; Title of Samuel Allen to 
Province lands, 1704 ; Gov. Joseph Dudley's Speeches ; Commission of 
John Bridger as Surveyor-General of all Her Majesty's woods ; An act 
for a Free School to be kept at Portsmouth, 1708; Petition of inhabi- 
tants of Quamscott patent for a Charter; Petition of Inhabitants of the 
south part of Hampton, Hampton Falls, in relation to maintenance of a 
Minister, 1709; Expedition to Port Royal, 1710; Capture of Port Royal, 
1710; Expedition against Canada, 1711; Petition from Hampton Falls in 
regard to school maintenance, 1712 ; Petition of Kingston, 1712 ; Articles of 


Pacification with the Eastern Indians, 1713 ; Petition of the Inhabitants of 
Bloody Point, 1713 ; Petition of Dover, 1715 ; Sketch of Sir Charles Hobby ; 
Sketch of Gov. Samuel Shute, with his address to the Legislature, 1717 ; 
Petition of Portsmouth, 1717; Treaty with the Eastern Indians at George- 
town, 1717; Sketch of John Bridger, Surveyor-General, 1719; Apology of 
the People of Nutfield to Governor Shute, 1719-20. 

Note. — The Journal of the Council and Assembly contained in this volume records 
the joint transactions of the two bodies. The Assembly's acts required the approval of 
the Council to give them force. The preceding volume of this series concerned the Acts 
of the Council as the Executive body of the Province. " No Journal of the House, sepa- 
rate from the joint Journal of the Council and Assembly, is found till 1711, and this is 
very meagre and incomplete till 1722." 

Vol. IV. 1722 to 1737 : containing important Records and Papers, 
pertaining to the Settlement of the Boundary Lines between New- 
Hampshire and Massachusetts. Manchester, 1870. viii, 891 pp. 

Contents. Records of Council, administration of Lt.-Gov. John Went- 
worth ; Journal of the General Assembly, April 30, 1722, to April 22, 1729 ; 
Submission of Eastern Indians, 1725; Treaty with the Indians at Casco, 
1727 ; Journal of the House of Representatives, 1722-1724 ; List of tax 
payers in New Castle in 1728 ; Administration of Governor William Bur- 
net : Journal of the House of Representatives from April 22, 1729, to Aug. 1, 
1730 ; Journal of the Council and Assembly from April 22, 1729, to April 
23, 1730, during Governor Burnet's administration ; Administration of 
Governor Jonathan Belcher : Journal of the House from August 25, 1730, 
to October 20, 1737 ; Petition of inhabitants of Chester, 1737 ; Journal of 
the General Assembly under the administration of Governor Jonathan 
Belcher, from August 25, 1730, to October 20, 1737 ; Correspondence, chiefly 
between Theodore Atkinson and Capt. John Thomlinson, agent of the 
Province in London, relating mostly to the settlement of the boundary lines 
between the Massachusetts Bay and New Hampshire ; The Belcher corres- 
pondence, 1731-1737 : Correspondence of Gov. Jonathan Belcher with 
Secretary Waldron and others of the New Hampshire Province. 
Note. — "Contains all the Proceedings of the Governor, Council, and General Assem- 
bly of the Province, and all official documents and papers found in the Secretary's office, 
relating to the long controversy between New Hampshire and Massachusetts, in respect 
of the Boundary lines between the two Provinces." 

Vol. V. 1738 to 1749 : containing very valuable and interesting 
records and papers relating to the Expedition against Louisbourg, 1745. 
Nashua, 1871. viii, 962 pp. 

Contents. Administration of Gov. Jonathan Belcher; Journal of the 
House, Nov., 1738-Feb. 25, 1739-40; Miscellaneous papers: Standards of 
weights; Province accounts, 1724-1740; Bills of Credit; Petition of Rev. 
Hugh Adams of Durham concerning his Maintenance ; Letters of Rev. 
Hugh Adams ; Order for fitting out Privateers, 1739 ; Orders relative 
to Spanish prizes, 1739-40 ; Address of the House of Commons about the 


value of Gold and Silver, and Bills of Credit, 1739; Declaration of war 
against Spain; Certificate respecting Bills of Credit, &c, Dec. 31, 1739; 
Letters to Governor Belcher concerning an Expedition to New Spain, 
&c, 1709-40 ; Journal of the General Assembly, Nov. 1, 1738-March 
18, 17 10-1 ; Administration of Gov. Benning Went worth : Records of the 
Council, 1742-67, 1772-74 ; Journal of the House of Representatives under 
the administration of Gov. Benning Wentworth, 1741-2-June 4, 1748 ; Mis- 
cellaneous papers : Bill for taxing the New Districts ; Report of committee 
to call the first meetings in Towns, 1742; Memorandum of sundry stores 
at Fort William and Mary, 1742 ; — List of the Commissioned officers in the 
Sixth regiment of Militia in the Province of New Hampshire ; Cape Breton 
Expedition, plan of operations, 1745; Documents relating to Fort Dummer; 
Journal of the General Assembly, 1742-1750 ; Massachusetts Bill pro- 
jected to sink the Paper Currency, &c. ; Memorial of officers at Louis- 
bourg; Agreement between John Thomlinson and John Tufton Mason, 
relative to purchase of Mason's claim ; Letter from Masonian Proprietors 
to the Committee on Province Lands, 1746 ; Answer to Queries respecting 
the reduction of Canada, 1746 ; Petition of inhabitants of Stratham, 1746 ; 
Petition of inhabitants of Pennycook for a further supply of Soldiers, 1747; 
Important Documents comprising Letters and Papers relating to preceding 
matters in this volume : Petitions to the King from Inhabitants of New 
Hampshire in favor of Governor Belcher ; Petition of John Thomlinson, 
1739 ("gives a more comprehensive and complete view of the whole dispute 
respecting the boundary lines, than can elsewhere be found ") ; Thomlinson 
papers, 1741; Shirley Papers in relation to the Louisbourg expedition, 
1744-5; List of New Hampshire men in Col. Samuel Moore's regiment 
engaged in the Louisbourg expedition, 1745. 

Note. — "This volume is of great interest arid historical value, as containing all the 
official records and documents found in the Secretary's office and elsewhere, relative to 
the part which New Hampshire took in the Expedition against Louisbourg, 1745. . . . 
The attention of readers is also particularly iuvited to the documents contained in this 
volume relative to the final determination of the boundary line between New Hampshire 
and Massachusetts, aud the very able papers drawn up by John Thomlinson in the latter 
part of the volume, . . . and the failure of the intended expedition against Canada, 
1746 and 1747." 

Vol. VI. 1749 to 1763: containing very valuable and interesting 
Records and Papers relating to the Crown Point Expedition, and the 
Seven Years' French and Indian wars, 1755-1762. Manchester, 1872. 
xii, 929 pp. 

Contents. Administration of Gov. Benning Wentworth, 1749-1763 : 
Records of His Majesty's Council, 1750-1763; Correspondence showing a 
conspiracy for the removal of Gov. Benning Wentworth from office ; Journal 
of the House of Representatives, 1748-1763 ; Special conventions called 
August, 1754; Indian troubles at Stevens-Town and vicinity; Correspon- 
dence on Indian hostilities ; Names of men in service on Merrimack River ; 
Connecticut River ; of men posted in the neighbourhood of Keene and Fort 


Dummer ; Journal of Walter Bryent in running the line between New 
Hampshire and the Province of Maine, 1741 ; Journal of a Special Conven- 
tion relating to Expedition to Crown Point, 1755 ; Letter from Col. Blanchard 
from Albany, Aug. 28, 1755 ; Proceedings of a Council of War held by Gov- 
ernor Shirley at New York, Dec. 12, 1755 ; Grant of £30,000 for Crown 
Point expedition ; Journal of Special Convention, Sept., 1756, concerning 
Loudon's report of the fall of Oswego ; Petition against a Play-House in 
Portsmouth, 1762 ; Miscellaneous papers : Correspondence between John 
Thomlinson, Secretary Atkinson, and others ; A Representation of the 
Lords of Trade, respecting New Hampshire, 1753 ; Report of agents em- 
powered to receive the money voted by Parliament to the Colonies ; Com- 
missions of Gov. Benning Wentworth, from His Majesty, George III., 1760. 
Note. — This volume includes documents, acts, &c., relative to the controversy 
between the House of Representatives and Gov. Benning Wentworth ; the official pro- 
ceedings of the Government and the part of the inhabitants in the French and Indian 
wars ; the extension and growth of the settlements in the Northern and Western 
sections of the Province ; the encouragement of Rev. Eleazar Wheelock's education 
of the Indians. 

Vol. VII. 1764 to 1776; including the whole Administration of 
Gov. John Wentworth ; the events immediately preceding the Revolu- 
tionary War ; the losses at the Battle of Bunker Hill, and the record 
of all proceedings till the end of our Provincial history. Nashua, 1873. 
xxi, 799 pp. 

Contents. Administration of Gov. Benning Wentworth, 1764-1767; 
Records of the Council, 1764-1774; Journal of the House, during the 
administration of Gov. Benning Wentworth, 1764; Proclamation relating 
to the boundary between New York and New-Hampshire, 1764 ; Petition of 
Rev. Timothy Walker in relation to Bow, N. H., 1764; Proceedings of the 
General Congress at New York, 1765 ; Petition of the Colonies in relation to 
the Stamp Act, 1765 ; Declaration adopted by the Congress at New York, 
1765 ; Administration of Gov. John Wentworth ; Commission of John 
Wentworth; Journal of the House, 1767-1775; Census of New Hampshire, 
1767 ; Division of the Province into five Counties ; Letter from Governor 
Bernard on the boundary line between New-Hampshire and Massachusetts, 
1767 ; Instructions to Jonathan Belcher relative to the Boundary line, 1740 ; 
Correspondence with Virginia and Maryland on the late act of the British 
Parliament, 1768-69 ; Road from the Governor's house in Wolfeborough to 
Dartmouth College, 1771 ; List of rateable estates in the towns of the Prov- 
ince, 1773 ; Papers relating to the complaint made by Peter Livius against 
Gov. John Wentworth, 1773 ; Fac-similes of the signatures of the Provin- 
cial Chief Magistrates of New Hampshire from 1686 to 1775 ; Revolutionary 
Proceedings : Commencement of organized action in New Hampshire in the 
Revolution ; First Provincial Congress ; Letters relating to the landing of tea 
at Portsmouth ; Frances Town resolves, 1774 ; Seizure of Fort William and 
Mary at New Castle, 1774 ; Non-importation Association ; Memorial to the 
Colonies from the Continental Congress ; Address to the King ; Second 



Provincial Congress; Hillsborough County Congress; Third Provincial Con- 
gress; Fourth Provincial Congress, Journal, May, 1775; Correspondence: 
Letters of Committee of Safety, etc., 1775 ; Fifth Provincial Congress ; 
Journals of the Conventions in Congress which assembled at Exeter, Dec. 
21, 1775 ; Miscellaneous documents : Sundry documents relating to Sur- 
veys, Boundaries, and Population of New Hampshire ; Attack on Quebec, 
1775 ; Census of New Hampshire, 1775. 

State Papers. Documents and Records relating to the State of New 
Hampshire during the Period of the American Revolution. 

Vol. VIII. From 1776 to 1783; Including the Constitution of New- 
Hampshire, 1776; New Hampshire Declaration for Independence; the 
" Association Test," with names of Signers, &c. ; Declaration of Ameri- 
can Independence, July 4, 1776; the Articles of Confederation, 1778. 
Concord, N. H., 1874. xxviii, 1006 pp. 

Contents. Journal of the House of Representatives, 1775-76 ; Corres- 
pondence, 1776; Journal of the House, March 6, 1776-March 23, 1776; 
Correspondence, Committee of Safety, etc., March 23, 1776- June 4, 1776 ; 
List of members of the House, June, 1776 ; Journal of the House, June 5, 
1776-July 6, 1776; Returns of the Association test: list of signers in the 
various towns of New Hampshire ; Correspondence, July 5, 1776- Aug. 23, 
1776; Journal of the House, Sept. 4, 1776-Sept. 20, 1776; Special conven- 
tion for raising troops, Oct., 1776; Correspondence, Aug. 23-Nov. 28, 1776; 
Journal of the House, 1776-77 ; Correspondence between April 12-June 4, 
1777 ; Journal of the House, June 4, 1777-July 19, 1777 ; Correspondence, 
July 19-Sept. 17, 1777; Journal of the House, Sept. 17, 1777-Sept. 27,1777; 
Correspondence, Sept. 30-Dec. 7,1777; Journal of the House, Dec. 17- 
March 14, 1778 ; Articles of Confederation ; Journal of the House, Aug. 12- 
Nov. 28, 1778 ; Public acts [in regard to the Loyalists] ; Proceedings of 
General Assembly, Dec. 25, 1778, to April 3, 1779 ; Resolves of a convention 
held on the New Hampshire grants [at Cornish], Dec. 9, 1778 ; Proceedings 
of the General Assembly, Dec. 26, 1778- April 3, 1779 ; Dec. 15, 1779-Jan. 1, 
1780; Feb, 9, 1780-March 18, 1780; April 19-29, 1780; June 7, 1780-June 
28, 1780; Correspondence, Aug. 18, 1780-Oct. 6, 1780; Proceedings of the 
General Assembly, Oct. 11, 1780-Nov. 11, 1780; Dec. 20, 1780-Jan. 27, 
1781; March 14, 1781-April 11, 1781 ; June 13, 1781-July 4, 1781; Aug. 22, 
1781-Sept. 1, 1781; Nov. 7-Nov. 24, 1781 ; Dec. 19, 1781-March 27, 1782; 
Sept. 10-14, 1782; Nov. 13-22, 1782; Dec. 18, 1782-March 1, 1783; Names 
of sick and wounded Soldiers ; Proceedings of the General Assembly, June 
10-20, 1783. 

Town Papers. Documents and Records relating to Towns in New 
Hampshire; with an Appendix embracing the Constitutional Conventions 
of 1778-1779; and of 1781-1783; and the State Constitution of 1784. 

Vol. IX. Concord, 1875. xli, (1), 939 pp. 


Contents. The Wheelwright Deed, by the Editor; Town Papers (al- 
phabetically arranged by Towns) ; Appendix : Constitutional Conventions 
in New Hampshire, 1778-1783, with the Constitution established in 1784 : 
List of Delegates chosen from the several Towns, classed Towns, and 
Places in New Hampshire, in 1778 to meet at Concord, June 10, for the 
purpose of forming a new Constitution ; The Constitution proposed in 1779 : 
A Declaration of Rights and Plan of Government for the State of New 
Hampshire ; The Second Constitutional Convention, list of Delegates ; An 
Address of the Convention for framing a new Constitution of Government, 
for the State of New Hampshire to the Inhabitants of the State, sent out, 
1781 ; Proposed Constitution of 1781 ; Second Address of the Convention 
for framing a new Constitution or form of Government for the State of 
New Hampshire to the Inhabitants of said State, sent out in 1782 ; A Con= 
stitution, containing a Bill of Rights, and form of Government, agreed upon 
by the Delegates of the people of the State of New Hampshire, in Conven- 
tion, held at Concord, on the first Tuesday of June, 1783 ; submitted to, 
and approved of, by the people of the State ; and established by their Dele- 
gates in Convention, Oct. 31, 1783, with a note on the "Bill of Rights " as 
regards Slavery in New Hampshire, by the Editor. 

Note. — The present volume has its chief value from the light thrown upon the 
settlements of the Towns, their struggles with the Indians, their boundary line disputes, 
locations of meeting-houses, settlement and maintenance of ministers, &c. 

Provincial and State Papers. Miscellaneous Documents and Records 

relating to New Hampshire at different periods. 
Vol. X. Including — 

(i) Journal of the N. H. Convention which adopted the Federal 
Constitution, 1788. 

(ii) Journal of the Convention which revised the State Constitution in 

(iii) The Great Controversy relating to the "New Hampshire Grants" 
(so called), 1749 to 1791 ; including troubles in border Towns 
on both sides of the Connecticut River, 1781-1783. 

(iv) Letters, &c, of Committee of Safety, 1779 to 1784. 

(v) Census of 1773. 

(vi) Census of 1786. 

(vii) Appendix, containing Copies of Ancient Grants, &c, supple- 
mentary to Volume I. 

Concord, 1877. xxvi, (2), 719 pp. 

Contents. Journal of the Proceedings of the Convention of the State of 
New Hampshire which adopted the Federal Constitution, 1788 ; List of 
Delegates, with Biographical notes by the Editor ; Journal of the Convention 
which assembled, in Concord, to revise the Constitution of New Hampshire, 
1791-1792 ; List of Delegates, with Biographical sketches by the Editor ; The 
Controversy between New Hampshire, New York, and Vermont, relating to 


the " New Hampshire grants " (so called) from 1749 to 1791 ; including the 
Troubles in border Towns on both sides of the Connecticut River: Con- 
troversy with New York in relation to Boundaries ; Proceedings in relation 
to the New Hampshire Grants under the Administration of Gov. John 
Wentworth; Brief history of the Controversy with Vermont, by Jeremy 
Belknap ; Discontent in the border Towns of New Hampshire lying east of 
Connecticut River ; — An Address of the Inhabitants of the Towns of Plain- 
field, Lebanon, Enfield (alias Relhan) Canaan, Cardigan, Hanover, Lime, 
Orford, Haverhill, Bath, and Landaif, to the Lihabitants of the Several 
Towns in the Colony of New Hampshire. Norwich: Printed by John 
Trumbull, M,DCC,LXXVT. {Reprint) ; — Vermont assumes Government 

— New York opposes : Declaration and Petition of the Inhabitants of 
the New Hampshire Grants to Congress, Jan. 15, 1777; Vermont asks 
aid from New Hampshire ; — Observations on the Right of Jurisdiction 
claimed by the States of New York and New Hampshire, over the New 
Hampshire Grants (so called) lying on both sides of Connecticut-River. 
Danvers : Printed by E. Russell. MDCCLXXVHL {Reprint) ; — An 
Address to the Inhabitants of the New Hampshire Grants (so called) lying 
westward of Connecticut River, by Timothy Walker; — First attempt of 
border Towns in New Hampshire to unite with Vermont ; — A Public 
Defence of the right of the New-Hampshire Grants (so called) on both sides 
Connecticut-River, to associate together, and form themselves into an 
Independent State. Dresden : Printed by Alden Spooner, 1776. {Reprint) ; 

— Measures to form a new State of towns on both sides of Connecticut 
River : Resolves of a Convention held on the New Hampshire Grants 
at Cornish, Dec. 9, 1778 ; Address to the Inhabitants of the State of 
Vermont, by Ira Allen, dated at Dresden, Nov. 27, 1778 ; Final dissolution 
of the Union of Towns east of Connecticut River with Vermont, 1779 ; Pro- 
posal to unite all the New Hampshire Grants with the State of New Hamp- 
shire ; Reference to Congress of Matters in Controversy, 1779 ; Address 
by Ira Allen to the inhabitants of the State of Vermont, July 13, 1779 ; 
Fresh measures to form a new State of the New Hampshire Grants on both 
sides the Connecticut River : Proceedings of a Convention at Walpole, 
Nov. 15, 16, 1780 ; Convention at Charlestown, N. H., Jan. 16, 17S1 ; Dis- 
puted Jurisdiction between New Hampshire and Vermont ; Memorial of 
inhabitants of Chesterfield, Aug. 25, 1781 ; Report of a Committee of 
Congress, to whom was referred papers relative to New Hampshire, Oct. 17, 
1781 ; Commission to Commissioners of Vermont, for the settlement of 
Boundary lines, 1781 ; — Collision in border towns, 1781-82 ; — Copy of 
Letters, Orders, &c, by the New Hampshire Committee of Safety, 1779 to 
1784 (These papers consist of copies of^ letters written by the Committee 
of Safety, 1779-1784, in relation to current matters, and are of historical 
value " as showing the embarrassments of the country, — the difficulty of 
raising money for the support of the war ; the dangers of frontier towns ; 
the patriotic spirit of the committee, and the sacrifices made by the 
people ") ; — Census of 1773 ; Census of 1786; Appendix: The Grant of the 
Province of Laconia to Sir Ferdinando Gorges and Capt. John Mason, Nov. 


17, 1629 ; The Squamscott or Hilton's Point Patent, Mar. 12, 1629 (O. S.) ; 
The Dover Combination, with the names of all the original signers, Oct. 20, 
1640; Letter from Capt. Thomas Wiggin to Sir John Cooke, Nov. 19, 
1632 [in regard to Massachusetts Colony, and the Machinations of Sir 
Christopher Gardiner, Thomas Morton, and Ratcliffe]. 

Town Papers. Documents relating to towns in New Hampshire, 
" A" to "F" inclusive, with an Appendix, embracing copies, in Fac- 
simile, of the First Constitution of this State as adopted January 5, 
1776 ; the Proclamation sent out to the people declaring the said Con- 
stitution to be in force ; and a Constitution framed in June, 1779, which 
was rejected by the People. Also, other interesting and valuable 

Vol. XI. Compiled and edited by Isaac W. Hammond. Concord, 
1882. xxx, (2), 812 pp. 3 folded broadsides. 

Contents. Acworth ; Albany ; Alexandria ; Alstead ; Allenstown ; Alton ; 
Amherst; Antrim; Andover; Atkinson ; Barn stead ; Barrington ; Bartlett; 
Bath ; Bedford ; Bethlehem ; Benton ; Boscawen ; Bow ; Bradford ; Brent- 
wood ; Bridgewater ; Brookline ; Campton ; Canaan ; Candia ; Canterbury ; 
Centre Harbor ; Chaiiestown ; Chatham ; Chester ; Chesterfield ; Chiches- 
ter ; Claremont ; Colebrook ; Columbia ; Concord ; Conway ; Cornish ; 
Croydon ; Dalton ; Danbury ; Danville ; Deerfield ; Deering ; Dorchester ; 
Dover ; Dublin ; Dunbarton ; Durham ; East Kingston ; Eaton ; Effingham ; 
Enfield ; Epping ; Epsom ; Errol ; Exeter ; Fitzwilliam ; Francestown ; 
Franconia; Fremont. Appendix: Documents relative to the service done 
in the French War by the Quakers of Dover, Durham, Madbury, Rochester, 
Barrington, and Somersworth; Letter from Col. Theodore Atkinson, Dec. 
13, 1768, in regard to boundary between N. H. and N. Y. ; Proclamation to 
the insurgents in Cheshire and Grafton counties, Jan. 12, 1782 ; Roll of 
Capt. William Barron's company, for Canada, 1776 ; Documents relative 
to Charter Records ; Documents relative to boundaries of several towns in 
Grafton County, 1780-1793 ; Col. Benjamin Sumner's Scheme to secure an 
alliance with the Indians in Canada, 1800 ; Documents printed in fac-simile 
(broadsides) : First Constitution of New Hampshire, 1776 ; Proclamations 
declaring the same to be in force ; Amended Constitution of 1779, which 
was rejected by the People (this last is on a folio sheet printed at Exeter, 
1779), headed " A Declaration of Rights, and Plan of Government for the 
State of New Hampshire." 

Note. — Collects under each town copies of all the written instruments accessible in 
the State Department relating to the settlement, incorporation, boundary lines, church 
matters, maintenance of ministers, roads, currency, taxes, etc., of the towns throughout 
the State. "These documents have been carefully copied from the original manuscripts, 
scrupulously preserving the orthography, punctuation, capitalization." The volume 
" contains a large number of names of early residents. . . . Some papers having been 
published mainly for giving the names signed to them. . . . The editor has compiled an 
introduction to each town, containing in brief many facts relative to its grant, settle- 
ment, incorporation, origin of name, etc." 


Vol. XII. Gilmanton to New Ipswich, with an Appendix, embracing 
some Documents relative to Towns which have been returned to the 
State Archives since the publication of Volume XI. Concord, 1883. 
xxxii, (2), 85-4 pp. 

Contents. Gilmanton ; G ileum ; Goffstown ; Goshen ; Grafton ; Gran- 
tham : Greenfield ; Greenland ; Groton ; Hampstead ; Hampton ; Hampton 
Falls; Hancock; Hanover; Haverhill; Henniker; Hill; Hillsborough; 
Hinsdale ; Holderness ; Hollis ; Hooksett ; Hopkinton ; Hudson ; Jackson ; 
Jaffrey ; Jefferson ; Keene ; Kensington ; Kingston ; Lancaster ; Landaff ; 
Langdon ; Lebanon ; Lee ; Lempster ; Lincoln ; Lisbon ; Litchfield ; 
Littleton ; Londonderry ; Loudon ; Lyman ; Lyme ; Lyndeborough ; Mad- 
bury; Manchester; Marlborough; Marlow; Mason; Meredith; Merrimack; 
Middleton ; Milf ord ; Monson ; Moultonborough ; Nashua ; Nelson ; New 
Boston ; Newbury ; New Castle ; New Durham ; New Hampton ; Newing- 
ton ; New Ipswich. Appendix : List of Saratoga men, 1777 ; Boscawen 
enlistments, etc., 1776, 1778, 1779 ; Bow returns of soldiers, enlistments, 
1776, 1778, 1780 ; Canterbury train band, enlistments, etc., 1776, 1780, 
1781 ; Chichester return of Capt. Cram's company, 1776 ; Concord enlist- 
ments, 1779 and 1781 ; Agreement between the town of Exeter and Edmund 
Gilman, 1647 ; Deed of Wadononamin, to Edward Hilton, 1660. Docu- 
ments relative to a Convention of delegates from towns in Hillsborough 
and Cheshire counties, 1783. 

Note. — " Many valuable documents relative to soldiers of the various Indian and 
French and Revolutionary Wars may be found in this and the preceding volume." — 

Vol. XIII. New London to Wolfeborough, with an Appendix, 
embracing some Documents, interesting and valuable, not heretofore 
published, including the Census of New Hampshire of 1790 in detail. 
Concord, 1884. xxxi, (3), 856 pp. 

Contents. New London ; New Market; Newport; Newton; Northfield; 
North Hampton ; Northumberland ; Northwood ; Nottingham ; Orange ; 
Orford ; Ossipee ; Pelham ; Pembroke ; Peterborough ; Piermont ; Pitts- 
field; Plainfield; Plaistow; Plymouth; Portsmouth; Raymond; Richmond; 
Rindge; Rochester; Roxbury ; Rumney; Rye; Salem; Salisbury; San- 
bornton ; Sandown ; Sandwich ; Seabrook ; Shelburne ; Somersworth ; 
South Hampton ; Springfield; Stark; Stewartstown ; Stoddard; Stratford; 
Stratham ; Sullivan ; Sunapee ; Sharon ; Surry ; Sutton ; Swanzey ; Tam- 
worth ; Temple ; Thornton ; Tuf tonborough ; Unity ; "Wakefield ; Walpole ; 
Warner ; Warren ; Washington ; Weare ; Wentworth ; Westmoreland ; 
Whitefield ; Wilton ; Winchester ; Windham ; Windsor ; Wolfeborough. 
Appendix : Letter from Sebastian Ralld, 1716 ; Letter from Gov. Belcher con- 
cerning line between New Hampshire and Massachusetts, 1733 ; Letter from 
Gov. Francis Bernard concerning the same ; Dover militia officers, 1731-32 ; 
Soldiers order, 1775; Piermont drafted men, 1777; Lloyd's Hills; Docu- 
ments relating to Vermont controversy : Proceedings of a Committee meet- 


ing, at Lebanon, Feb. 13, 1777 ; at Hanover, June 11, 1777 ; — Report of 
committee of the Legislature on the foregoing, Nov. 19, 1777 ; Statement 
relative to Gen. Sullivan's position in regard to the New Hampshire grants ; 
Census of New Hampshire in detail, 1790. 

The State of New Hampshire. Rolls of the Soldiers in the Revolu- 
tionary "War, 1775, to May, 1777 : with an Appendix, embracing Diaries 
of Lieut. Jonathan Burton. 

Vol. XIV. Vol. I. of War Rolls. Concord, 1885. xiii, (3), 799 pp. 

Contents. French and Indian War rolls ; Revolutionary War rolls ; 

Appendix: Diary of Lieutenant Jonathan Burton [at Winter Hill, Dec, 

1775 — Jan. 26, 1776]; Diary of Lieutenant Jonathan Burton, while in 
the Canada Expedition, from Aug. 1, 1776, to Nov. 29, 1776. The 
following are the principal regimental rolls printed in this volume : New 
Hampshire men at Bunker Hill ; Col. Stark's regiment, pay-rolls, Aug., 
1775 ; Col. James Reed's regiment ; Col. Enoch Poor's regiment ; Col. 
Timothy Bedel's regiment, muster-rolls, 1775 ; Col. John Stark's regiment, 
receipts, Oct., 1775; Col. Enoch Poor's regiment, receipts, Oct., 1775; Col. 
James Reed's regiment, receipts, Oct., 1775; N. H. men in Quebec expe- 
dition ; Roll of troops engaged in the defence of Piscataqua harbor ; 
N. H. men at Winter Hill, Dec, 1775; Col. Bedel's regiment, pay rolls, 

1776 ; Col. Isaac Wyman's regiment, July, 1776 ; Col. Joshua Wingate's 
regiment, July, 1776 ; Col. Pierse Long's regiment, Aug., 1776 ; Col. Thomas 
Tash's regiment, Sept., 1776 ; Col. Nahum Baldwin's regiment, Sept., 1776 ; 
Col. David Gilman's regiment, Dec, 1776 ; Col. Pierse Long's regiment 
pay rolls, Jan., 1777 ; Col. Pierse Long's regiment as paid for their march 
to Ticonderoga, Feb., 1777. First N. H. Continental Regiment, 1777, pay- 

Vol. XV. Vol. II. of War Rolls. May, 1777, to 1780, with an 
Appendix, embracing names of New Hampshire men in Massachusetts 
regiments. Concord, 1886. xiv, (2), 847 pp. 

Contents. Revolutionary War rolls ; Ticonderoga Expedition ; Benning- 
ton troops, 1777 ; Continental regiments, 1778-79 ; Rhode Island campaign, 
1778 ; Piscataqua harbor troops, 1779 ; Appendix : New Hampshire Men in 
the service in Massachusetts Regiments. 

The State of New Hampshire. Rolls and Documents relating to 
Soldiers in the Revolutionary War, with an Appendix, embracing some 
Indian and French War Rolls. 

Vol. XVI. Vol. III. of the War Rolls. Manchester, 1887. x, (2), 
1021 pp. 

Contents. Revolutionary War rolls : 1780,1781; Continental Army regi- 
ments ; Town accounts for bounties, etc., paid to Revolutionary Soldiers ; 
Appendix : Indian and French War rolls (relating to scouting parties dur- 
ing the Indian troubles and Soldiers in the French wars) ; List of New 
York Tories' lodgings ; Diary of Lieutenant Abraham Fitts, of Candia, 
N. H. Sept. 27, 1777 — Nov. 1, 1777. 


The State of New Hampshire. Part I. Rolls and Documents relat- 
ing to Soldiers in the Revolutionary War. Part II. Miscellaneous 
Provincial Papers, from 1629 to 1725. 

Vol. XVII. Vol. IV. of the War Rolls. Manchester, 1889. xxiv, 
(2), 819 pp. 

Note. — Part I. contains : Miscellaneous Eolls and Documents copied in part from 
the originals in the Pension Department at Washington and in part from the archives 
of the State. The Documents consist of Town Bolls, Company Kolls, Soldiers' petitions, 
Bounty statements, etc., from 1774 to 1781. 

Part II. contains : Transcripts from ancient Documents in the English archives in 
London, copied under the supervision and at the expense of the late John Scribner 
Jenness, of Portsmouth, of which some of the more important are the following : Grant 
of the Province of Laconia to S? Ferdinando Gorges and Capt. J. Mason, 1629; Grant 
and confirmation of Pescataway to S* F. Gorges and Capt. John Mason, 1631 ; A Rela- 
tion concerning the estate of New England, 1636 ; The Dover Combination, 1640; Peti- 
tion of the inhabitants of Portsmouth and Strawberry Bank, 1665; Title of Robert 
Mason to New Hampshire, 1674; Petition of inhabitants of Dover, 1677; Portsmouth 
petition, 1677; Hampton petition, 1677; Petition from Mason and Gorges, 1677; An 
Account from the agents of Boston concerning their northern bounds, 1678; Title of 
Robert Mason to New Hampshire, statement in support of Title, and complaints of Mas- 
sachusetts encroachments; Secretary Chamberlain to Lords of Trade and Plantations, 
1681, relative to New Hampshire affairs; Petition of Robert Mason against the Council 
of New Hampshire, 1681; Proceedings in Council, Sept., 1681, Oct., 1682; New Seal, 
Proclamation, Governor and Council sworn ; Gov. Cranfield to the Commissioners, de- 
scription of the Province, Resources, etc., 1682; Gov. Cranfield on Mason's claim, etc.; 
Papers relative to Massachusetts jurisdiction ; Cranfield to Secretary of State, concern- 
ing Edward Gove; Copies from miscellaneous Province and State Papers, 1675-1724. 

Pages 154-210 contain: "Major-General John Sullivan: Proceedings of a Court of 
Inquiry, including Testimony; Letters and Certificates approving his Conduct in the 
Staten Island Expedition, and the Battle on the Brandywine, 1777." The volume also 
contains the Revolutionary military correspondence of Col. Bedel. 

The State of New Hampshire. Miscellaneous Provincial and State 
Papers, 1725-1800. 

Vol. XVIII. Manchester, 1890. xxix, (3), 982 pp. 

Contents. The multitude of documents in this volume precludes a detailed 
list of contents, but some of the more important are here enumerated : — 

Proceedings of the Council and Assembly, 172S-20 ; Gov. Jonathan 
Belcher's Commission as Governor of New Hampshire, 1730 ; Instructions 
to Gov. Belcher; Proclamation concerning the King's woods, 1730; Petition 
of appeal of John Thomlinson, agent for New Hampshire, to the King in re- 
gard to the boundary between Massachusetts and New Hampshire, 1737 (?) ; 
Answer of Richard TValdron to the foregoing ; Documents relative to the 
Province Seal and its use, 1738, 1739 ; Instructions to privateers in war with 
Spain, 1739, 1710; Atkinson and Thomlinson correspondence; Report of 
Board of Trade on New Hampshire acts, on Bills of Credit, etc., 1713; List 
of the men who hired the " £25,000 Loan," 1713 ; Gov. Wentworth to Board 


of Trade, 1744 [on encroachments of Massachusetts, Land grants, Boundary, 
etc.] ; Message, House to the Governor on the Fort Dunimer controversy, 
1745; Louisbourg expedition, petitions of soldiers, etc., 1745, 1746 ; Papers 
on Crown Point expedition, 1747 ; Correspondence between Governors 
' Shirley and Wentworth ; Plan of Fort Dummer; Trade between New Hamp- 
shire and West Indies, 1751 ; Gov. Wentworth to Board of Trade, giving 
an account of the boundaries and situation of the Province of New Hamp- 
shire, 1750, 1751 (Massachusetts and New York Controversies, etc.) ; In- 
structions to Gov. Wentworth, 1761 ; List of deserters from ships in Boston 
Harbor, 1770 ; Memorial of Peter Livius, with charges against Gov. Went- 
worth; Justices in New Hampshire, 1776; Petition from Slaves, 1779; 
States' quotas for Indian warfare, 1786 ; Road from Concord to Durham ; 
Papers of Lieut. -Col. Joseph Wait of the Continental army ; Documents 
relating to Portsmouth church affairs, etc., 1676-1716, 1717. 

Note. — "This volume completes the publication of the Miscellaneous Provincial 
and State Papers from 1725 to 1800. These Papers were selected by the Editor from a 
mass of Papers in the State House in 1880. The volume also contains all the ' Belknap 
Papers ' which were not published in Vols. IV. V. and VI. The Appendix contains 
some documents furnished by Hon. Horatio L. Wait, of Chicago, relative to his K evolu- 
tionary ancestor, Joseph Wait ; also Papers furnished by Frank W. Hackett concerning 
early church affairs, etc., in Portsmouth." Preface. 

Provincial Papers of New Hampshire, including the Records of the 
President and Council, January 1, 1679, to December 22, 1680; July 6 
to September 8, 1681; November 22, 1681, to August 21, 1682; Rec- 
ords of the Governor and Council, October 4 to October 14, 1682, under 
the successive Administrations of Cutt, Waldron, and Cranfield : Acts 
of the Assembly, August Session, 1699 ; Journals of the House of 
Representatives, August 7, 1699, to October 4, 1701, and May 9, 1711, 
to April 30, 1722: Ancient Documents relating to the Controversy over 
the Boundary Line between New Hampshire and Massachusetts. W r ith 
historical Notes, a chronological List of Boundary Line Papers, contem- 
porary Maps, and other illustrations. 

Vol. XIX. Albert Stillman Batchellor, Editor. Manchester, 
1891. 760 pp. Folded plans. 

Contents. Journal of the House of Representatives, May 9, 1711, to 
April 30, 1722 ; Documents relating to the Boundary line Controversy be- 
tween New Hampshire and Massachusetts ; Richard Hazzen's Journal of the 
Survey of the Boundary line between Massachusetts and New Hampshire, 
March 20 to April 6, 1740-1 [sic'] ; Walter Bryent's Journal in running the 
Boundary between New Hampshire and that part of the Massachusetts Bay 
called County of York, 1741 ; The Boundary line Case, copied from a printed 
volume in the office of the Secretary of State, entitled " New Hampshire 
and Massachusetts Boundary Cases, 1739 " ; Chronological List of papers 
relating to the disputed Boundary line, including all printed in this and pre- 
ceding Volumes ; Proceedings of the President and Council of the Province 



of New Hampshire from January 1, 1679 (O. S.), to December 22, 1680; 
July 6, 1681, to September 8, 1681 ? November 22, 1681, to August 21, 1682; 
October 4 to October 14, 1G82; Communication of Charles Deane to the 
Massachusetts Historical Society respecting the Records of the President 
and Council of New Hampshire for 1679-1680; — Acts and laws passed by 
the General Court or Assembly of His Majesties Province of New Hamp- 
shire in New-England. Boston, printed by B. Green and J. Allen, 1699, 
reprinted from the original imprint now in the custody of the Historical 
Society of Pennsylvania ; Memoranda concerning the New Hampshire laws 
of 1699, by George H. Moore, LL.D., N. Y., 1889 {Reprint) ; — Journal of 
the Assembly [House of Representatives of the Province of New Hamp- 
shire] August 7, 1699, to October 4, 1701. 

Early State Papers of New Hampshire. Including the Constitution 
of 1784, Journals of the Senate and House of Representatives, and 
Records of the President and Council from June, 1784, to June, 1787, 
with an Appendix containing an Abstract of the Official Records relative 
to the Formation, Promulgation, Consideration, and Adoption of the 
Federal Constitution, and illustrative Notes. 

Vol. XX. Manchester, 1891. 930 pp. 

Note. — The Appendix contains Notes on the Convention for the regulation of 
Commerce, to be holden at Annapolis, on the first Monday in September, 1786, Com- 
missioners for New Hampshire ; The Convention of 1787, at Philadelphia; Action of the 
General Court of New Hampshire in response to the invitation to join in the Convention ; 
The ratification of the Constitution on the part of New Hampshire ; Biographical 
Sketches of three representative Men of the Constitutional period, — Benjamin West, 
Elisha Payne, and John Langdon ; Some account of John Langdon, by John Langdon 

Vol. XXI. Including the Journals of the Senate and House of 
Representatives and Records of the President and Council, from June, 
1787, to June, 1790, with an Appendix containing Biographical Sketches 
of men who sustained important Relations to the State Government 
during that Period, taken from the manuscript Biographies of Gov- 
ernor William Plumer; also Correspondence and Acts of the Legislature 
pertaining to the Federal Constitution and the Relation of New Hamp- 
shire to the Federal Government. Concord, 1892. vi, (2), 930 pp. 

Note. — "The student of constitutional history will find in these pages the official 
account of the Proceedings of the General Court touching the election of delegates, pro- 
vision for a convention to consider the proposed Federal Constitution, and the assump- 
tion of the various privileges and duties of Statehood. . . . The currency, the public 
debt, inter-state affairs, the revision of the laws, the ever-present Masonian controversy, 
and the spirit of rebellion which was rife in 1787, were among the subjects of adminis- 
tration and legislation which demanded the highest order of statesmanship, and which 
give the official narrative a peculiar interest and value." Preface. 

The " biographical sketches of several persons participating in the Government of 
New Hampshire in the period from 1784 to 1793, copied from the manuscript of William 


Plumer, by permission of the New Hampshire Historical Society," are of Joseph Badger, 
Benjamin Bellows, Jonathan Blanchard, Joshua Brackett, John Calfe, Joseph Cilley, 
John Dudley, Abiel Foster, Jonathan Freeman, William Gardner, Joseph Gilman, 
Nicholas Gilman, John Langdon, Woodbury Langdon, Samuel Livermore, John Sulli- 
van, Meshech Weare, and Paine Wingate. 

Vol. XXII. Including the Journals of the Senate and House of 
Representatives and Records of the President and Council, from June, 
1790, to June, 1793, with an Appendix, containing the Journal of the 
Senate at the Impeachment of Woodbury Langdon, the Records of the 
New Hampshire Society of the Cincinnati, and Biographical Sketches 
of Men who sustained important Relations to the State Government 
during the Period covered by those Records and Journals, taken from 
the manuscript Biographies of Governor William Plumer. Concord, 
1893. vi, (2), 923 pp. 

Note. — The most important legislation of the period covered by this volume, was 
probably that of the adoption of the Constitutional Amendments which went into effect 
in 1793. 

Vol. XXIII. State of New Hampshire. A list of Documents in the 
Public Record Office in London, England, relating to the Province of 
New Hampshire. Chronologically arranged according to the Order of 
Record in the several Series designated as Colonial Papers, Miscella- 
neous Correspondence, Colonial Entry Books, Board of Trade Journal, 
Board of Trade New England, Board of Trade New Hampshire, Board 
of Trade Plantations General, Board of Trade Proprietaries, Board of 
Trade Papers, and America and West Indies. With Notes and Indexes. 
Manchester, 1893. 557 pp. 

Note. — " The calendar of documents in the English Archives, relating to New 
Hampshire, which follows, is the work of Mr. B. F. Stevens, of London, England/' 

Vol. XXIV. Town Charters. Including Grants of Territory within 
the present limits of New Hampshire, made by the Government of 
Massachusetts, and a Portion of the Grants and Charters issued by the 
Government of New Hampshire ; with an Appendix, consisting of Papers 
relating to the Granting of the various Lines and Bodies of Towns, with 
Acts in regard to Town Bounds in general, and many Documents pro- 
duced by Disputes between Towns concerning their Boundary Lines, 
with illustrative Maps and Plans, and complete Indexes. Town Char- 
ters, Volume I. Concord, 1894. xvi, (2), 971 pp. 16 sheets of plans. 
7 folded Maps. 



Records of the Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, 
in New England. 

Printed by order of the Legislature. Transcribed and edited by John 
Russell Bartlett, Secretary of State. 

Vol. I. 1636 to 1663. Providence, 1856. 549 pp. 8vo. 

Contents. Records of the settlements at Providence, Portsmouth, New- 
port and Warwick, from their commencement to their union under the 
colony charter, 1636 to 164-7 ; Records of the Colony of Rhode Island, and 
Providence Plantations, under the first Charter, 1647 to 1663. 
Note. — " The records of the city of Providence previous to the organization of the 
government in 1647, are very meagre. It is supposed they were kept in greater detail 
and were destroyed in the year 1676, when the town was hurned by the Indians, as 
those that remain bear traces of fire and water. To make up for the want of a journal 
of events, such documents as would elucidate the history of the period have been used. 
These are the Indian deeds connected with Providence, with a variety of other docu- 
ments of a historical nature, or connected with the purchase of the Indian lands, their 
transfer from Roger Williams to his associates, the first allotments of lands to the early 
settlers, &c. In selecting the materials for this volume, the Indian deeds of each of 
the four towns, and the town records to 1647, have been used. From that period, the 
official journals of the proceedings of the General Assembly have been followed to the 
close of the volume." Preface. 

Vol. II. 1664 to 1677. Providence, 1857. iv, 609 pp. 
Note. — « The second volume . . . commences with the adoption of the charter of 
Charles the Second, and the organization of the government under the same, in March, 
1663-1664, and extends to the close of the year 1677, thereby including fourteen years 
of the Colonial annals. The Records of the proceedings of the General Assembly are 
printed verbatim from the original manuscript copy in the Archives of the State. In 
addition to these, there are inserted in their proper places, the records of the ' Proceed- 
ings of the Governor and Council.' . . . Two important events in the history of the 
Colony took place during the period included in this volume. These are the dispute 
with the Colony of Connecticut for the jurisdiction of the Narragausett country, . . . 
and King Philip's War." Preface. 

Vol. III. 1678 to 1706. Providence, 1858. vii, (1), 595 pp. 

Note. — " The events of this period are among the most important in our Colonial 
History. They include, first, a discussion of the several claims for the ownership of 
Mount Hope and the Narragansett country. . . . The subversion of the charter govern- 
ment, and the administration of Sir Edmund Andros, render the year 1686 an important 
era in our Colonial history. The Colony was now merged into the government of New 
England, under that Royal Governor, and degenerated into a mere county. No meet- 
ings of the General Assembly took place under his government, and the only records 
that in any way show what was done in the Colony during this period are those of the 
Courts of Quarter Sessions. These though meagre have been introduced into this vol- 
ume. Documents illustrating the Andros period are printed from th° John Carter 
Brown collection, from the ' Usurpation papers ' in the collections of the Massachusetts 


Historical Society, etc." The Colonial Records, beginning with the assumption of the 
Charter in February, 1690, after the fall of Andros, are now followed to the year 1706." 
Documents regarding the Earl of Bellomont's inquiry into certain imputed irregularities 
of the government of Rhode Island, with explanatory papers, are mainly drawn from 
John Carter Brown's collection. " The concluding documents in the volume appertain 
to the history of the privateers and pirates which infested our waters." 

Vol. IV. 1707 to 1740. Providence, 1859. iv, 622 pp. 

Note. — Contains Proceedings of the General Assembly, 1707-1740. The Public 
Laws are generally omitted. Acts for the division of towns, their boundaries and 
organizations, and those relating to provisions for the defence of the colonies, have been 

Vol. V. 1741 to 1756. Providence, 1860. iv, 594 pp. 

Note. — This volume is largely devoted to the part taken by Rhode Island in the 
French and Spanish wars, the expeditions against Louisbourg, Cape Breton, Crown 
Point, Ticonderoga, Oswego, Quebec, etc. Documents relative to the currency, bills of 
credit, form a considerable part of the volume. 

Vol. VI. 1757 to 1769. Providence, 1861. iv, 629 pp. 

Note. — Comprises documents on the French and Indian war, the campaigns against 
Canada, Fort William Henry, Ticonderoga, Oswego, Niagara, etc., papers on the Con- 
vention of American colonies at New York, in 1765, and proceedings relative to the 
Stamp Act. Stephen Hopkins's "The Rights of the Colonies examined," 1764, is 
printed in full. 

Vol. VII. 1770 to 1776. Providence, 1862. iv, 643 pp. 

Note. — Pages 55-192 contain "A History of the destruction of His Britannic 
Majesty's Schooner Gaspee, in Narragansett Bay, on the 10th of June, 1772; accom- 
panied with the Correspondence connected therewith, the action of the General Assembly 
of the Colony of Rhode Island thereon, and the official journal of the proceedings of the 
Commission of inquiry." Comprises illustrative documents on the Revolution and pre- 
ceding events in Rhode Island. 

Vol. VIII. 1776 to 1779. Providence, 1863. iv, 661 pp. Portraits. 

Note. — In addition to the Proceedings of the Assembly during the Revolutionary 
period, there is included a mass of correspondence, embracing letters of Washington, 
Greene, and Sullivan. 

Vol. IX. 1780 to 1783. Providence, 1864. (4), 763 pp. Portrait. 

Note. — The records in this volume are principally concerned with war measures, the 
raising of troops, furnishing supplies for the army, etc., with Correspondence of Revolu- 
tionary generals, members of Congress, etc. 

Vol. X. 1784 to 1792. Providence, 1865. (4), 527 pp. 

Note. — The adoption of the Constitution of the United States was the principal 
event of the period covered. The State held aloof from ratifying the Constitution 
until 1792. 



Records of the Council of Safety and Governor and Council of the 
State of Vermont, to -which are prefixed the Records of the General 
Conventions from July, 1775, to December, 1777. 

Edited and published by Authority of the State, by E. P. Walton. 
Vol. I. Montpelier, 1873. viii, 556 pp. Portrait. 8vo. 

Contents. General conventions in the New Hampshire grants, for the 
independence, organization, and defence of the State of Vermont, July, 

1775, to December, 1777 : Convention at Dorset, July 26, 1775, Jan. 16, 

1776, July 24, 1776, Sept. 25, 1776; at Westminster, Oct. 30, 1776; Jan. 
15, 1777 ; at Windsor, June 4, 1777, July 2, 1777, Dec. 24, 1777 ; The first Con- 
stitution of the State of Vermont : Introduction, Amendments of 1786, 1793- 
1870, with notes ; Origin of the Constitution and comparison with the Frame 
of government granted by Charles the Second to William Penn; Copy of the 
first Constitution ; Council of Safety of the State of Vermont, July 8, 1777> 
to March 12, 1778: Introduction; The powers of the Council ; Members of 
the Council ; Proceedings of the Council of Safety, July 8, 1777, to Mar. 12, 
1778; Record of the Governor and Council, March 12, 1778, to August 23, 
1779, with biographical notices ; The Governor and Council as a Board of 
War, March 11-July 11, 1779. — Appendix : Proceedings of the "Congress" 
and "Committee of Safety" for Cumberland county, June, 1774, to Sept., 
1777 ; Gloucester county committee of Safety ; — " Some miscellaneous Re- 
marks, and Short Arguments, on a Small Pamphlet, dated in the Convention 
of the Representatives of the State of New- York, October 2, 1776, and sent 
from said Convention to the County of Cumberland, and some Reasons 
given, why the District of New Hampshire Grants had best be a State. By 
Ira Allen. Hartford, printed by Ebenezer Watson, near the Great Bridge, 
M.DCCLXXVII." {Reprint.) — Manifesto prepared and published by order 
of the Westminster Convention, October 30, 1776 ; Dr. Thomas Young to the 
Inhabitants of Vermont, 1777 [relative to recognition by the Continental 
Congress, and action of the Congress thereon] ; Remarks on Article Three of 
the Declaration of Rights, by Daniel Chipman; The name " Vermont " ; The 
union of New Hampshire towns with Vermont, in 1778-9 ; Proclamation of 
pardon issued by Governor Chittenden, June 3, 1779; — A Vindication of 
the Opposition of the Inhabitants of Vermont to the Government of New- 
York, and of their Right to form an Independent State. Humbly submitted 
to the impartial World. By Ethan Allen. Printed by Alden Spooner, 
1779, Printer to the State of Vermont. (From the only copy of the original 
pamphlet in the State Library.) — Documents on the enforcement of the 
authority of Vermont in Cumberland Comity in May, 1779. 

Additions and Corrections. 


Records of the Governor and Council of the State of Vermont. 
Vol. II. Montpelier, 1874. viii, 528 pp. Portraits. Plate: View 
of Catamount-tavern. 

Contents. Records of the Governor and Council, Oct., 1779, to August 
29, 1782 ; Records of the Board of War ; The first Vermont Council Chamber 
in the old Catamount Tavern at Bennington, by Hiland Hall ; Resolutions 
of Congress in September and October, 1779, and action of Vermont 
thereon : Memorial of a Convention held at Lebanon, N. H., July 27, 1779, 
by a Committee of the Convention ; The Claim of Massachusetts to part of 
Vermont. Vermont's Appeal to the candid and impartial World. Contain- 
ing a fair Stating of the Claims of Massachusetts-Bay, New-Hampshire, and 
New-York. The Right the State of Vermont has to Independence — With 
an Address to the Honorable American Congress, and the Inhabitants of 
the thirteen United States. By Stephen R. Bradley, A.M., Hartford : Printed 
by Hudson & Goodwin [1779]; — A Concise Refutation of the Claims of 
New-Hampshire and Massachusetts-Bay to the territory of Vermont ; with 
occasional Remarks on the long disputed Claim of New-York to the same. 
Written by Ethan Allen and Jonas Fay, Esq 1 . 8 . Published by order of 
the Governor & Council of Vermont. Hartford : printed by Hudson & 
Goodwin [1780]; — Mission of Ira Allen to New Jersey, Pennsylvania, 
Delaware, and Maryland ; Action of Congress in reference to Vermont, 
from Feb. 7 to Oct. 6, 1780, and legislative Proceedings and Documents 
connected therewith : Representation of inhabitants of Hartford, Norwich, 
Sharon, Royalton, Fairlee, Newbury, and Barnet, presented to Congress 
in August, 1779, and again Feb. 8, 1780 ; Petition of the principle inhabi- 
tants on Connecticut river on both sides and northward of Charleston, met 
in a convention at Dresden on the New Hampshire Grants, August 30th, 
1780 ; Proposals of Vermont for a permanent Alliance and Confederation 
with adjoining states ; The Second Union of New-Hampshire Towns with 
Vermont, and union with part of New York, in 1781: Proceedings at a 
Convention of delegates from the several towns in the county of Cheshire, 
in the State of New-Hampshire, held at Walpole Nov. 15, 16, 1780 ; Journal 
of convention of delegates from forty-three towns on the New Hampshire 
grants, held at Charlestown, Jan. 16, 1781 ; Secret history of the Charles- 
town convention, by Ira Allen; Joint action of the Charlestown and 
Cornish Convention and the General Assembly of Vermont, Feb., 1781, 
resulting in the Second Eastern Union ; Proposal of Vermont to settle 
the boundary question with New York, Feb., 1781 ; Proceedings of Con- 
gress relating to Vermont, July 19 to Aug. 20, 1781 ; Vermont delegates 
to Committee of Congress, Aug. 18, 1781, with questions of the Committee 
and answers of the Delegates, and an account of the interview, by Ira 
Allen ; Proceedings of the General Assembly of Vermont, Oct. 16-19, 1781 ; 
Force against Vermont attempted by New York and contemplated by New 
Hampshire, 1781-2 ; Collisions in the Western district, Oct. and Dec, 1781 ; 
Collisions in the Eastern district, Nov., 1781, to Feb., 1782; Account of the 
Second Eastern Union, by Jeremy Belknap ; Ira Allen's account of the col- 


lisions in the Eastern and Western districts, 1781-2; Correspondence of 
Gov. Chittenden and General Washington on Vermont affairs, Nov., 1781, 
and Jan. 1, 1782 ; — 

The Present State of the Controversy between the States of New-York 
and New-Hampshire on the one part, and the State of Vermont on the 
other. Hartford, printed by Hudson & Goodwin, M.DCC.LXXXII. — 
" The original draft of this pamphlet was printed, from the manuscript 
Ethan Allen Papers, in the second volume of Vt. Hist. Soc. Collections, pp. 
231-239. The argument was re-written and enlarged for the press. Though 
the committee consisted of five, the authorship is doubtless to be assigned to 
Ethan Allen." Editor. 

Dissolution of the Eastern and Western Unions, February, 1782; Obser- 
vations relating to the influence of Vermont, and the territorial claims, on 
the politics of Congress, by James Madison ; The Haldimand correspond- 
ence, 1779-1783 [concerning the efforts of General Frederick Haldimand 
to negotiate with Vermont for a treaty of peace with Great Britain] ; 
Protest of adherents to New York against Vermont in 1778, and origin of 
the Charlestown Convention of Jan. 16, 1781 ; — Covenant, compact, and 
resolutions adopted by a Convention of the Representatives of the Settlers 
on the New Hampshire grants west of the Green Mountains — in 1775 ; — 
The Proceedings of the Convention of the New Hampshire Settlers ; con- 
taining the Covenant, Compact, and Resolutions: and also Twelve Acts of 
Outlawry. Passed by the Legislature of the Province of New York against 
those Settlers, and their answer to the same. Hartford : Printed by 
Ebenezer Watson. 1775. (Reprint.) 

Additions and corrections of Vols. I. and II. 

Vol. III. Montpelier, 1875. viii, 540 pp. Portrait. 

Contents. Records of the Governor and Council, Oct., 1782, to Jan. 27, 
1791. Appendix : Resolutions of Congress hostile to Vermont, Dec. 5, 1782, 
and related documents; Renewed application of Vermont for admission 
into the Union and documents thereon : Resolutions and address to Con- 
gress ; Proposed partition of Vermont between New Hampshire and New 
York ; Insurrection in Windham county, and its bearing on the Vermont 
question in Congress, Oct., 1783, to Oct., 1784 ; Obstacles in Congress to the 
recognition of Vermont, 1785-6 ; Conflicting Titles to Land, and measures of 
relief ; The Betterments acts, 1781-1785 ; Vermont at the period of Shays's 
Rebellion, 1784 to 1787 : Public discontent-meeting in the town of Wells ; 
Meeting of malcontents in Rutland county; Insurrections in Windsor and 
Rutland counties; Aid to Massachusetts in Shays's Rebellion; Vermont 
acts of sovereignty : Bills of credit in 1781 ; Coinage of copper money I 
Naturalization acts in 1785 and 1787 ; Post-office department established ; 
Negotiations on Commerce between Vermont and foreign Countries; Negoti- 
ations for a ship canal from Lake Champlain to St. Lawrence river. — Settle- 
ment of the controversy with New York ; The Vermont convention of 1791 ; 
Proceedings and Debates of the Convention for adopting the Constitution of 
the United States : Celebration of the adoption of the Constitution at Rut- 


land, March 8, 1791; — Admission of Vermont into the Union; Papers of 
Charles Phelps, of Marlborough, on the controversy with New York, &c, 
1770 to 1777. 

Additions and corrections to Vols. I., II., and III. 

Vol. IV. Montpelier, 1876. iv, 554 pp. Portrait. 

Contents. Records of the Governor and Council, Oct., 1791, to Oct., 
1804 ; Vermont in 1791, as viewed by a Virginian ; No Slaves in Vermont in 
1791; Amendments to the Constitution of the United States; Letters of 
public officers of Vermont, 1791 to 1802 ; Internal improvements, on land and 
water : Champlain canal, and navigation of Connecticut river ; — Surveillance 
of the northern frontier by British troops, 1783 to 1796 : Organization of 
the town of Alburgh ; Interference at Alburgh of British officers in 1792 ; 
Vermont charged with endangering the peace of the country ; Withdrawal 
of the British troops. — Military contributions of Vermont for the military 
Service of the United States, 1792 to 1800 : The Vermont company in Gen- 
eral Wayne's war against the Northwestern Indians, 1792-95 ; The minute- 
men of 1794, 1797-8, Vermonters in the 16th Regiment, U. S. army in 
1798-9 ; — Extradition of fugitives from justice, 1796-99 ; Addresses of the 
Legislature of Vermont to the President of the United States, and answers 
thereto, 1796-1803 ; Obituary notices of Gov. Thomas Chittenden and Doct. 
Jonathan Arnold ; Governor's speeches to the legislature, 1797-1803 ; Re- 
plies of Vermont to the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions of 1798; Last 
Speech of Gov. Thomas Chittenden. 

Vol. V. Montpelier, 1877. iv, 569 pp. Portrait. Plates. 

Contents. Record of the Governor and Council, Oct. 1804 to Oct. 1813 ; 
Appendix: Governor's Speeches to the General Assembly, 1804 to 1812; 
Proposed Amendments to the Federal Constitution ; State-Capitals and 
State-houses of Vermont : Rutland and Windsor State Capitals from 1791 
until 1797; Montpelier the State Capital subsequent to 1807; The first 
State-House at Montpelier, 1808 to 1835; The second State-House at Mont- 
pelier, 1836 to 1857 ; The third State-House at Montpelier, from Oct. 13, 
1859; — The Vermont State Bank, 1806; Northern boundary line of Ver- 
mont; Addresses of the Legislature of Vermont to the President of the 
United States, and Replies, 1806-1812 ; The State-Prison ; British intrigue 
in New England, 1809 : The Embargo in Vermont, and the Craig-Henry 
correspondence, 1808-1812; Domestic manufactures in Vermont, 1809; — 
Correspondence between Gov. Tichenor of Vermont and Gov. Craig of Can- 
ada, 1809: On the Suppression of Counterfeiting in Canada; — Origin and 
causes of the union of New Hampshire towns with Vermont in 1778 and 
1781 : An Address of the Inhabitants of the Towns of Plainfield, Lebanon, 
Enfield, (alias Relhan), Canaan, Cardigan, Hanover, Lime, Orford, Haverhill, 
Bath, and Landaff, to the Inhabitants of the several Towns in the Colony of 
New-Hampshire. Norwich: Printed by John Trumbull M.DCC,LXXVI. 
(Reprint) ; — Observations on the right of jurisdiction claimed by the States 
of New York and New Hampshire, over the New Hampshire grants (so 



called) lying on both sides of Connecticut- River. Danvers : Printed by E. 
Russell, MDCCLXXVIII. Signed " Republican " (R eprint); — An Address 
to the Inhabitants of the Xew Hampshire grants (so called) lying westward 
of Connecticut river [By Timothy Walker], 1778 {Reprint) ; — A Public De- 
fence of the right of the New-IIampshire Grants (so called) on both Sides 
Connecticut-River, to associate together, and form themselves into an Inde- 
pendent State. Dresden: printed by Alden Spooner, 1779 (Reprint); — 
Letter from Ira Allen to Meshech Weare, 1778 ; Address to the Inhabitants 
of the State of Vermont, by Ira Allen, Nov. 27, 1778 ; Brig. Gen. Wooster 
to Col. Warner, Jan. 6, 1776. 
Vol. VI. Montpelier, 1878. iv, 574 pp. Portraits. 

Contents. Records of the Governor and Council, Oct. 1813 to Oct. 1822; 
Governor's Speeches to the General Assembly, 1813 to 1821 (Chittenden, 
Galusha, Skinner) ; Boundary line between New York and Vermont, from 
the South- West corner of Vermont to Poultney river ; Proposed Amend- 
ments to the Constitution of the United States ; Vermont opposed to the 
Hartford Convention ; Vermont in the War of 1812 : Detached Militia ; 
Volunteer force ; Action of the Legislatures of 1812 and 1813 ; The Vermont 
Regiments in the U. S. army, 1812-1815 (lists of officers) ; Capture of the 
U. S. Sloops Growler and Eagle; A British plundering expedition to 
Plattsburgh, Swanton, and other towns ; British demonstration against 
Burlington, Aug. 2, 1813; Campaign against Montreal, Oct. and Nov. 
1813; Campaign of 1814 on the Niagara frontier; Capture of Fort Erie; 
Battle of Chippewa plain ; Battle at Lundy's Lane, July 25, 1814 ; Bat- 
tle of Fort Erie, Aug. 25, 1814 ; Land and Naval battles at Plattsburgh. 
— Vermont on Slavery and the Missouri question, 1819 and 1820; Rights of 
the respective States in the public Lands of the United States. 

Vol. VII. Montpelier, 1879. iv, 527 pp. Portraits. 

Contents. Records of the Governor and Council, Oct. 1822 to Oct. 1831; 
Governor's Speeches to the General Assembly, 1S22 to 1830 (Skinner, Van 
Ness, Butler, Crafts) ; Proposed amendments to the Federal Constitution ; 
Internal improvements in Vermont, 1823-1845 : Surveys for Canals in Ver- 
mont ; The Introduction of Railroads into Vermont ; Visit of Lafayette to 
Vermont, 1825. 

Vol. VIII. Montpelier, 1880. iv, 517 pp. Folded Map. Portraits. 
Contents. Record of the Governor and Council, Oct. 1831 to Oct. 1836; 
Governor's Speeches to the General Assembly, 1831 to 1834 (Gov. Palmer) ; 
Boundary line between Vermont and New Hampshire, Report, 1792 ; Tenure 
of the Executive office, 1832; Resolutions on Topics of national Policy, 1831- 
1831; Report on the erection of the Second State House in Montpelier; 
Judges of the Supreme Court arraigned, and vindicated, 1833; Biographical 
and Historical: Abel Curtis, Col. John Williams, Gen. William Barton; 
Hon. Timothy Stanley; — Claim of the Cognawaga Indians to land in Ver- 
mont ; Additional historical Documents on Gov. Benning Wentworth's 
Grants of land in Vermont, with list of Townships granted [New York 


claims to Vermont lands] ; Order of the Gov"- of the N. Y. [King's] College 
for the settlement of Kingsland, now Washington, Vt., 1772 ; Capture of 
Ticonderoga and Crown Point, 1775 ; Convention at Dorset, Sept. 21, 1775 ; 
Remonstrance against Congress authorizing Cols. Allen and Warner to 
raise Troops independent of New York, — probably 1776 ; Meeting of the 
Council of Safety of Cumberland county, Sept. 3, 1777 ; Scheme of 1779 to 
unite all the New Hampshire grants with New Hampshire ; Second Union 
of Towns east of Connecticut river with Vermont ; Some old maps touching 
Vermont; A chorographical map of the northern department of North 
America embracing Vermont, published about 1779 ; Tour of President 
Monroe in Vermont in 1817 ; Alphabetical list of Governors and Lieutenant 
Governors, March 13, 1778, to October, 1836 ; Members of the Council of 
Safety and Council, 1777 to 1836 ; Secretaries to the Governor and Council, 
1778 to 1836. 

Index to biographical and personal notices, Vols. I. to VIII. ; Chrono- 
logical Index to historical documents, notes and references ; List of Portraits 
and other engravings, Vols. I. to VIII. 

The Rev. Edward G. Porter addressed the Society in 
further explanation of the events which occurred between 
Lexington Green and Concord Bridge on the night of the 
eighteenth of April, 1775, and on the following day. The 
valuable details furnished by the speaker were listened to 
with great attention. 

The Rev. Dr. Joseph H. Allen followed Mr. Porter with 
a relation of some interesting traditions transmitted in his 
own family bearing upon the same events. 



^PIIE Annual Meeting was held at the Exchange Club, 
■*- corner of Milk and Battery march Streets, Boston, on 
Thursday, 21 November, 1895, at half-past five o'clock in 
the afternoon, the President, Dr. Benjamin Apthorp Gould, 
in the chair. 

The Records of the last Stated Meeting were read and 

The Annual Report of the Council was presented and 
read by Mr. Andrew McFarland Davis. 


The Stated Meetings of the Society, since the Annual Meeting 
in November last, have all been held at the Hall of the American 
Academy of Arts and Sciences. For the courtesy which has thus 
liberally been extended to us, our grateful acknowledgments are 
due. The attendance at our meetings was fair, and the proceedings 
were made interesting by the presentation of a number of papers 
which were devoted to the exposition of a great variety of historical 
topics. All these papers were referred to the Committee of Publi- 
cation, and all are now in type. 

The death of Leverett Saltonstall was announced at the April 
meeting of the Society. As was natural in the case of so con- 
spicuous a man, who counted amongst us so many admirers and 
friends, this announcement called forth a number of spontaneous 
expressions of the esteem in which he was held. The selection of 
Judge Lowell to prepare a Memoir of Mr. Salstonstall seemed in 
every way fitting and appropriate, and his acceptance of this 
friendly office was the cause of genuine satisfaction to the 

Two deaths occurred among our members, in the interim be- 
tween the April Meeting and the present assembling of the 
Society. There are few of us who did not watch the career of the 


son of our War Governor when he was called into public life, with 
full conviction that his freedom from the restraint of partisan 
shackles would enable him to strike telling blows in behalf of 
the whole people. The vigor with which he entered upon the per- 
formance of his duties in Congress, and the manly attitude which 
he assumed, showed that we had counted aright; but, alas! the 
feeble body in which the spirit of John Forrester Andrew was 
lodged, was inadequate to support the strain which it was called 
upon to bear. His usefulness as a public officer was very soon 
impaired through his physical disability to perform the work which 
was imposed upon him. His friends hoped, however, that rest 
would restore his strength, and that he might still have many 
years of activity before him ; but his sudden demise cut short a 
career from which they had every reason to expect so much. To 
his friend Edmund March Wheelwright, the loving task has been 
assigned of preparing a sketch of his life. 

The fact that the greater part of the active life of James Walker 
Austin was spent in Honolulu, where he held high official position, 
probably cut him off from the close touch with his contemporaries 
in this Society which he would have had if he had devoted himself 
to the practice of his profession in this Commonwealth. After his 
return to this country, Judge Austin confined himself to office 
work ; and it was only those who were admitted to the privilege of 
his friendship who could appreciate the worth of his character, the 
charm of his conversation, and the extent of his cultivation. A 
memorial account of his career may be expected at an early day. 

We have reason to congratulate ourselves that we had secured 
the autographs of each of these gentlemen, that we have photo- 
graphs of Mr. Andrew and of Judge Austin, and that a friend has 
undertaken to provide a likeness of Mr. Saltonstall for our Album. 
While we have cause to rejoice that we have these mementoes of 
our deceased friends, it is unfortunately the case that there are 
some of our members who have failed to comply with the request 
sent them for their photographs. Day by day, through the activity 
of those having the matter in charge, the number of the delin- 
quents has been steadily reduced ; and it is to be hoped that we 
may soon have the opportunity of determining upon whom shall 
fall the unenviable distinction of being the last to respond to so 
reasonable a request. 


It was stated at the beginning of this Report that all the 
papers which had been presented at our meetings were in type. 
It would be a natural question to ask, where then is the first 
volume of our Publications ? No doubt was entertained by those 
having the matter in charge that it would have been in possession 
of the members of the Society before this time, but a tantalizing 
delay in the preparation of the Index has defeated their plans. 
The volume was closed with the paper read at the December 
meeting. The last numbered page was the four hundred and fifty- 
first. It is impossible to say how much space the Index will 
occupy ; but it cannot be doubted that the Introductory Note, the 
Transactions, and the Index will make a book of about the five 
hundred pages prescribed by the Council. 

At the several meetings, reports of which have been included in 
the First volume and in the first number of the Third, papers have 
been presented or communications of importance made by fourteen 
different members of the Society. Two researches, which we have 
thought worthy of a place in our Transactions, have been presented 
to us by gentlemen who are not members. In addition to this, 
there have been sundry communications on minor topics made by 
members which are not included in the above enumeration. This 
analysis of our work discloses a fair percentage of active workers 
in our membership ; but the fact still remains that there are many 
who can, if they will, help us to make a statement concerning the 
distribution of our work, when we shall analyze the papers con- 
tained in our next volume of Transactions, which will be even 
more satisfactory. 

An examination of the papers included in these Publications will 
disclose the fact that they cover a wide range in time, and treat of 
a great diversity of topics. It would, perhaps, be too much to say 
that a person of constructive imagination, well grounded in the 
art of critical analysis, could erect a fairly good skeleton of the 
history of the Colony and Province of the Massachusetts Bay 
from the details furnished by these papers and the hints given as 
to what is missing. Nevertheless, a glance at what could be done 
in this direction will reveal the possibilities herein suggested. 
There the student would find indicated the great importance 
attached to the possession of the Charter, and the conversion of 
the organization of a Trading Company into the Government of a 


Colony. The struggles for the retention of the Charter during the 
quo warranto proceedings and its final annulment by scire facias, 
though not given in detail, are alluded to. Many particulars are 
given concerning the government by Council administered in the 
days between Colony and Province, and the financial struggles 
under the Provincial administration are quite fully narrated. The 
growth and formation of municipal government in the Colony are 
discussed in the abstract in one paper and specially illustrated 
elsewhere by an elaboration of the facts connected with the estab- 
lishment of a single town. The social life of the people is touched 
upon in the biography of a magistrate and a soldier, while the 
perils of those who came in contact with the . Indians are vividly 
sketched in an account of a frontier family. The religious contro- 
versies of both Colony and Province are treated with great vigor 
and clearness. He w r ho would seek a definition, by competent 
authority, of Antinomianism may turn to the pages of our first 
volume ; and there he will also find disclosed the value of the 
Quakers as propagandists of religious liberty. The curious con- 
tribution to the literature connected with the Slavery discussion, 
which is to be found in the same volume, will be fully appreciated 
by those who have time to give it careful consideration. 

The exercise by the Colonial government of powers which were 
deemed an infringement of the Royal prerogative in the establish- 
ment of a mint, and the doubts which existed whether a similar 
infringement had not been made in the creation of the Corporation 
of Harvard College are set forth in detail. The vicissitudes of the 
College, during the period of the intermediate government between 
Colony and Province, are fully recorded; and the intervention 
of the Government in the affairs of the College, thereby reviving 
the Charter which was supposed to have fallen with that of the 
Colony, is pointed out. New information concerning the founder 
of the first scholarship at Harvard College is given, and enough of 
the pedigree of Lady Mowlson is furnished to show that her family 
name was Radcliffe. The evolution of the psalmody of the Colonies 
of Plymouth and the Bay is discussed, and the different sources from 
which the two systems derived their inspiration are indicated. The 
history of the records of the General Court and of the Court of 
Assistants is given, and the various punishments for crimes inflicted 
by the Courts are mentioned. Information is furnished as to 


several individuals of prominence in Colonial or Provincial times, 
and in our memorial notices we have two sketches of contempo- 
raneous biography which may serve as models. Facts of import- 
ance in determining the topography of Boston at different periods 
are set forth, among which will be noted with especial interest the 
claim that the site of Governor Winthrop's first Boston house is 
to be found within the limits of the present Exchange Building on 
State Street. The discussion of the Election Sermons cannot fail 
to attract attention. Within the vast mass of literary material 
which these sermons furnish, addressed as they were to men who 
were about to assume the management of the affairs of Colony, 
Province, or State, one might have expected to find allusions 
to current events which would aid materially in building up 
the history of the Commonwealth. If patient analysis of these 
dreary volumes has failed to reveal anything of moment in this con- 
nection, Ave are none the less indebted to the painstaking and indus- 
trious examination of their contents which enables us to say that 
he who is making a topical research will have but little occasion to 
consult their pages. Far more fruitful is the record of the Biblio- 
graphy of the Publications of the New England States. Here we 
have placed before us an account of the contents of each volume, 
thus enabling us to tell where we shall turn to find the several 
charters, grants, and rare papers which have been published in 
these records. 

Not only do the papers in our Publications throw occasional 
glimpses of light upon obscure points of historical interest, but 
through the contribution of new material we may claim that we 
have added to the resources of the historian. The commission of 
La Tour, a document which was deposited in our Archives, is of 
great interest. The publication of the records of the Bristol Con- 
vention of 1774 furnished occasion for an admirable exposition of 
the motives which led to this method of procedure in the evolution 
of the Provincial Congress, and the discussion which followed can 
be read with profit by the student of those times. 

The identification by Mr. Goodell of the handwriting of the 
sketch of the organization for the Cincinnati as that of Samuel 
Shaw is a matter of considerable importance, and the careful com- 
parison with the original draft by Knox is of great value. The 
interest which attaches to that crude financial experiment, the 


Land Bank of 1740, gives great importance to the copy of the sup- 
plementary agreement with the Company, executed by Joseph 
Weld, and submitted for the consideration of this Society by his 
descendant, William G. Weld. Those who wish to read the story 
of this great financial failure, and who care to examine in detail 
this peculiar document, must turn to the pages of our Publications, 
for there alone are they to be found. 

Volume Two of our Publications, it will be remembered, is 
devoted to the Commissions and Instructions of the Royal Gover- 
nors. The first number of Volume Three closes with the Trans- 
actions at the April meeting of the current year. 

The foregoing brief review of the contents of the papers read 
before this Society, which are now in type, will, we think, justify 
the claim set forth at its beginning. The historian, familiar 
with the period, will note the gaps which exist, and perhaps feel 
that too much is missing to warrant what was said ; but he who 
deals with movements and motives, who cares not for special 
events, nor for men, except so far as they are typical and illustra- 
tive, will find in this material enough to form a fair estimate of 
the character of the founders of this Commonwealth, of the mo- 
tives which governed them, and of the nature of their actions 
during the most critical periods of our history. 

The First volume of our Publications contains an admirable 
portrait of Judge Samuel Sewall, the gift of our fellow-member, 
Abner C. Goodell, Jr. It is intended to supplant the totally 
inadequate picture which accompanied the first number of our 
first volume. The several illustrations which will be found in 
the volume are by photographic processes, with the exception of 
the excellent likeness of Frederick Lothrop Ames. This is from a 
steel plate which was loaned to the Society. , 

For various reasons it was deemed desirable that the proceed- 
ings at our meetings should be placed in type, and, if possible, 
submitted to the members for suggestions in the way of revision 
and correction, in advance of their issue in the shape of a volume. 
In pursuance of this plan three numbers were distributed. As 
the fourth and concluding number of the series could only antici- 
pate the volume by a very short period, it was deemed unadvis- 
able to incur the expense of distributing that number. Several 
errors of minor importance have been noted and corrected in the 



plates. A mistake in the date, in the headings of the pages record- 
ing the proceedings of one of our meetings, is of sufficient impor- 
tance to make it desirable that the numbers which contain this 
error should be recalled. The illustrations contained in all three 
of the numbers are of value, and can be used in the bound volumes 
which we propose to issue. For these reasons, the Council voted 
to furnish each member of the Society with a bound copy of the 
First volume of the Publications, and to recall the numbers pre- 
viously issued. The details connected with this proceeding have 
not yet been arranged. Since the Society has no place of abode, 
it is evident that the intervention of some agent for the purpose 
must be secured. 

It had been expected by the Council that the distribution of 
this volume would at once give the Society a standing among our 
neighbors proportionate to the value of the book. For the present 
at least, it does not seem possible to attain this result. To secure 
any proper recognition of the volume it is essential that it should 
find its way to the shelves of the great Libraries of the country. 
It would be an easy matter for us to arrange exchanges with a 
great number of Societies, and thus in part accomplish what we 
desire in this respect; but we deem it unadvisable to do this, 
because of our having no place to receive and store them. 
We have therefore concluded to limit our edition, and to re- 
duce our distribution-list practically to members, and to a few 
periodicals from which we hope for careful reviews of the book. 

Long before the time will arrive for the Council to submit its 
next Annual Report, we shall be in position to speak authorita- 
tively of the opinion of competent and unprejudiced judges as to 
our first volume. Should it prove to be as favorable as we hope, 
we can then urge Avith greater force the necessity of making pro- 
vision for the two great wants of the Society, which were dwelt 
upon in the Report of last year ; namely, a Publication Fund, and 
a place of abode. Meantime, we leave the Treasurer's Report 
and the facts which we have herein recited to speak for them- 
selves, believing that they will do so quite as effectively as any 
appeal which the Council might make. 


The Treasurer presented to the Society his Annual Report, 
as follows : — 


In compliance with the requirements of Chapter VIII. Article 1, 
of the By-Laws, the Treasurer submits his Annual Report, made 
up to 15 November, 1895. 

In the two previous Annual Reports of the Treasurer mention 
was made of the action of the Council in appropriating some part 
of the free cash in the Treasury to be added to our Permanent 
Funds. It is a matter of regret that the ever-increasing demands 
upon our resources for the cost of printing our Transactions and 
Collections has made it impossible for the Council to make a simi- 
lar appropriation this year. The Council, however, has ordered 
that all Admission Fees, as well as all Commutations of the Annual 
Assessment as they are received, shall be transferred to the General 
Fund. In consequence of this action and of the apportionment 
between the two Funds of the interest received during the past 
twelve months, the Invested Funds of the Society show an actual 
increase for the year of 1516.42. 

Included in the item of interest is a bonus received for the dis- 
charge of a mortgage upon premises which were damaged by fire, 
and subsequently improved at an expense which necessitated an 
increase of the mortgage to an amount which it was imprudent to 
lend upon the estate. Exclusive of this bonus the average rate of 
interest on our investments received last year was 5.33 °/ o . 

At the close of our financial year it was found that about two 
hundred dollars would be needed to pay all audited demands 
against the Society, and to enable the Treasurer to present his 
Annual Account with a small balance on the right side of it. 
This fact was quietly made known to a few of our members, who, 
within a few hours, generously provided for the needs of the Trea- 
sury. Some of the letters which accompanied these contributions 
were not less welcome than the inclosures, since they expressed 
not only the pleasure which it afforded the writers to contribute 
to the Funds of the Society, but their cordial interest in its present 
and future success. 

The Funds of the Society are invested as follows : — 


$ 500 in a 6% mortgage, payable principal and interest in gold 
coin, on improved Real Estate in Cambridge ; 
1000 in a 5% Parti-Mortgage Receipt (No. 149) of the Convey- 
ancers Title Insurance Company, due 16 April, 1899, and 
payable principal and interest in gold coin, on improved 
Real Estate in Boston. 
51.95 deposited in the Charlestown Five Cents Savings Bank. 

The following is an abstract of the Accounts, and a Trial Balance 
of the books on 15 November, 1895 : — 



Balance 15 November, 1894 $71.57 

Admission Fees $10.00 

Annual Assessments 910.00 

Commutations of the Annual Assessment from Four 

Members 400.00 

Interest 131.26 

Mortgage discharged (in consequence of a fire upon the 

premises) 450.00 

Parti-Mortgage Receipts of the Conveyancers Title In- 
surance Company, Nos. 14 and 15, for $500 each, at 

5%, due 2 August, 1897, sold 1,000.00 

"Withdrawn from Charlestown Five Cents Savings Bank 156.50 

Henry II. Edes, temporary loan 65.00 

Contributions from nine members 190.00 3,312.76 



University Press, Printing $540.47 

Francis P. and C. S. Hathaway, mounting Photographs 

and Autographs of Members for the Society's Album 54.10 

Clerical Service 55.80 

Hooper, Lewis, and Company, Stationery 26.10 

Miscellaneous incidentals 444.55 

Henry H. Edes, temporary loan, paid 65.00 $1,186.02 

Parti-Mortgage Receipts of the Conveyancers Title In- 
surance Company, Nos. 14 and 15, for $500 each, at 
5%, due 3 August, 1897, both principal and iuterest 
payable in gold coin $1,000.00 

Parti-Mortgage Receipt of the Conveyancers Title In- 
surance Company, No. 149, at 5%, due 16 April, 1899, 
both principal and interest payable in gold coin . . 1,000.00 

Interest in adjustment 38.89 

Deposited in Charlestown Five Cents Savings Bank : Ad- 
mission Fees and Interest belonging to the Permanent 
Funds 122.92 2,161.81 

Balance on deposit in Third National Bank of Boston, 15 

November, 1895 36.50 





Cash $36.50 

Mortgages $1,500.00 

Charlestown Five Cents Savings Bank Deposit Book 

No. 41,613 51.95 1,551.95 

$1,588.4 5 


Income . $36.50 

Publication Fund $409.36 

General Fund . 1,142.59 1,551.95 


Henry H. Edes, 

Boston, 15 November, 1895. 

The Committee appointed to examine the accounts of the 
Treasurer reported through its Chairman, Mr. Nathaniel 
Cushing Nash, as follows : — 


The undersigned, a Committee appointed to examine the ac- 
counts of the Treasurer of The Colonial Society of Massachusetts 
for the year ending 15 November, 1895, have attended to that 
duty, and report that they find them correctly kept and properly 
vouched ; and that proper evidence of the investments and of the 
balance of cash on hand has been shown to us. 

Nathaniel C. Nash, 
Gardiner Martin Lane, 

Boston, 15 November, 1895. 

The several Reports wese accepted, and referred to the 
Committee of Publication. 

The Hon. William E. Russell, Chairman of the Com- 
mittee to nominate candidates for Officers for the ensuing 
year, presented the following list; and, a ballot being taken, 
these gentlemen were unanimously elected : — 
















Mr. Henry H. Edes paid the following tribute to the 
memory of Judge Austin : — 

My friendship with Judge Austin was of long standing. He 
graduated from Harvard College in 1849, in the class with our 
associates Mr. Brimmer and Mr. Choate. After graduating from 
the Harvard Law School, he went to the Hawaiian Islands and 
began the practice of his profession. He rose rapidly in the public 
esteem, and was soon chosen to places of trust and honor. In rapid 
succession he was made District Attorney, Member of Parliament, 
Speaker of the House, and a Justice of the Supreme Court. He 
was also placed on two important Commissions, — one for revising 
the Civil Code, the other for revising the Criminal Code of the 
Kingdom. Later he was appointed guardian of Prince Lunalillo, 
who subsequently ascended the throne of the Kamehamehas. 

Judge Austin returned to Boston in 1872, after a residence abroad 
of more than twenty years, and devoted himself to the care of trust 
estates. He was highly esteemed for his many noble qualities. 


His rugged honesty of opinion and positive ideas were sometimes 
veiled by his gentle manner ; but they never lacked vigorous ex- 
pression upon all proper occasions, and he always had the courage 
of his convictions. Frankness, purity of mind and of heart, loyalty 
to every duty and to friends, and sincerity were marked traits of 
his character. His sympathies were as tender and quick as a 
woman's. Censoriousness had no place in his fine nature ; and 
when he could not approve the actions of others, he cultivated that 
silence which is golden. He was as generous in his judgments 
of others as in his gifts to many worthy objects ; and in all the 
relations of life he furnished an example deserving emulation. 

Mr. Archibald M. Howe spoke of our late associate, 
Mr. Andrew, as follows : — 

John Forrester Andrew was the son of one of the great men of 
Massachusetts who held high station, John Albion Andrew. 

When Governor Andrew died, his son, then nearly seventeen 
years of age, must have known something of the daily life of his 
father and of the loftiness of his ideals. 

It is always a disadvantage to be the son of a great man ; but 
young Andrew, though not his father's equal, partook of his spirit. 
In boyhood and manhood he showed many instances of the same 
kind of sympathy with and knowledge of men, and the same deci- 
sion of character. Although literary pursuits did not attract him, 
he was easily the companion of his scholarly contemporaries, while 
his good sense and sound judgment grew stronger with each year 
of his life. He was graduated from Harvard in 1872, and, after 
travel abroad, pursued the study of law at the Harvard Law 
School, taking the law degree in 1875. He did not long pursue 
the active practice of his profession, being more attracted by poli- 
tical action. He was elected to the Massachusetts House of Repre- 
sentatives from Boston, serving in the years 1881, 1882, and 1883. 

In 1884 Mr. Andrew became State Senator, and the same year 
was elected a delegate to the National Republican Convention ; but 
refusing to support its candidate for President, James G. Blaine, he 
severed his connection with the Republican party. In the autumn 
of that year he was again elected to the State Senate, but this time 
by the votes of the Independents and Democrats. Although his 


taction in leaving one party and joining another was variously criti- 
cised, it is clear that his action was wisely taken, and upon grounds 
which involved the exercise of sound judgment, even though he 
believed it would end his political career. In 1888, and again in 
1890, he was elected to Congress by the Democrats, and during his 
two terms of service earnestly devoted himself to the cause of sound 
money and the reform of the civil service and the tariff. In office 
he was frequently independent in voting and in other legislative 
acts. His knowledge of men, and his power of persuasion in pri- 
vate conversation, did more than much speech-making could have 
accomplished to induce his fellow-members to act wisely on current 
questions. In the midst of the controversy over the free coinage 
of silver, he more than once left his seat in the House, hastened 
to New York or elsewhere, and by his clear statement of the situa- 
tion in Congress secured the attention of leading men, who forth- 
with exercised their influence to convert their representatives to 
the cause of sound money, or to compel them to take prompt 

The cause of Civil Service Reform Mr. Andrew supported 
urgently as Chairman of the Civil Service Reform Committee on 
the part of the House, and in many other ways throughout his 
public career ; while as Park Commissioner of Boston, his good 
taste and judgment were exercised in ways that have already 
secured for our citizens incalculable benefits. 

For nearly twenty years of his life Mr. Andrew gave more time 
to political and philanthropical causes than is usual for a man 
who had so much inducement to devote himself to his own pur- 
suits, or to the promotion of his political fortune. Of the men 
who have been in public office only for a few years, and who have 
not been pre-eminent by reason of their powers as orators or writers, 
few have done so much for good causes by their common-sense and 
knowledge of men as John Forrester Andrew. When he did 
speak, he said what he believed to be true ; and never did he utter 
words for effect or. for ordinary political expediency. 

After the adjournment of the meeting, dinner was served. 
Dr. Gould occupied the chair, and the Rev. Dr. Joseph H. 
Allen invoked the Divine blessing. 

1895.] ANNUAL DINNER. 153 

The only guest of the Society was Charles Francis 
Adams, LL.D., President of the Massachusetts Historical 

After dinner, speeches were made by Dr. Gould, Mr. 
Adams, the Hon. Roger Wolcott, the Hon. George Fred- 
erick Williams, and Mr. Francis C. Lowell. 

An incident alluded to by Mr. Adams called forth from 
the Hon. Darwin E. Ware an interesting reminiscence of 
the Dorchester Celebration of 1855. 

During the dinner the health of President Gould was 
proposed by Mr. Charles Sedgwick Rackemann, and was 
drunk standing by the gentlemen present. 

Vice-President William Watson Goodwin occupied the 
chair during a part of the evening. 




A Stated Meeting of the Society was held in the Hall 
of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences on 
Wednesday, 18 December, 1895, at three o'clock in the 
afternoon, the President in the chair. 

The Records of the Annual Meeting having been read and 
approved, the Corresponding Secretary reported that he 
had received several letters from Librarians and the officers 
of Historical Societies in different parts of the country, 
expressing the wish to subscribe for our Publications. 

Mr. Andrew McFarland Davis communicated for the 
consideration of the Society a copy of an indictment of two 
negroes, in 1742, for attempting to fight a duel on Boston 
Common with rapiers. One of the combatants is described 
as "labourer, servant;" the other as "labourer & servant 
or slave." The challenge is set forth in the indictment, and 
the encounter of the combatants ; but the event fades out in 
the assertion that they " did then and there attempt to fight 
a duel." Mr. Davis stated that while the circumstances 
connected with this transaction could not be regarded as of 
much consequence, yet all information which led to an 
understanding of the life of those days would undoubtedly 
be welcomed by students of the times. 

The Document 1 is as follows : — 

Suffolk ss. Att his Majesty's Superiour Court of Judicature Court 
of Assize and General Goal Delivery begun & held at Boston in & 
for y c County of Suffolke on y c third tuesday of August in y e sixteenth 
year of y e Reign of our Sovereigne Lord George y e Second of Great 
Brittain etc King Def r of y e Faith etc Anno q e Domini seventeen hun- 
dred and forty two 

i Suffolk Court Files, vol. ccclvi., no. 55.818. 


The Jurors for our s d Sovereigne Lord y e King upon oath present that 
Caesar a Negroe of Boston in y e County of Suffolke afores d labourer 
servant to Sam 1 Miller of said Boston Gunsmith on or about the six- 
teenth day of March last past att Boston in y e County of Suffolke 
afores d of his private malice and revenge did then and there challenge 
and provoke one Tom Negroe of Boston aforesd labourer & servant or 
slave of Daniel Bell of sd Boston Mason to fight a Duel with him at 
small sword who then & there accepted y e aforesd challenge and y e sd 
Tom negroe and Cesar negroe in consequence thereof in y e Comon at 
Boston aforesd in ye County of Suffolke aforesd Did then and there at 
y e time last mentioned armed each of them with a Rapier or small 
sword of their private malice fury & revenge meet each other with 
force & arms did voluntarily engage in Rencountier with small sword 
to y e manifest hazard of each of their lives, and did then & there with 
small sword voluntarily wickedly & maliciously attempt to fight a duel 
each with ye other and armd as aforesd And so ye said Jurors upon 
Oath say that y e sd Tom and Cesar negroes with force as aforesd out 
of malice & their private revenge did challenge accept and attempt to 
fight a Duel with small sword each with the other to the hazard of their 
lives, in evil example to others & contrary to y e peace Crowne & 
dignity of our sd Lord y e King as alsoe to y e Law in y e case made & 
provided. J. Overing Attorn 

Witnesses V Dno Rege. 

Mr Glover Billa vera Jos. Green Foreman 

Phillips Chamberlain 

Mr Casno & Mr 

Salters Negroes 

Mr Barkers Sam 

Lives @ Captn Watts. 

The two negroes gave bail, and the bonds are to be found 
in the Suffolk Court Files. 1 Samuel Miller, gunsmith, and 
Thomas Pemberton, shopkeeper, entered into recognizance 
for £200 each for Caesar ; while Daniel Bell, bricklayer, and 
William Young, gentleman, were each held for the same 
amount for Tom. Mr. Davis stated that he had found no 
other trace of this case, either in the Files or on the Records 
of the Courts. 

Mr. Henry Dwight Sedgwick read the following paper 
on — 

i Suffolk Court Files, vol. ccclvi., no. 55.818. 



Under many quaint and rugged spellings the cognomen of 
Sedgwick can be traced in the North of England as far back as 
1379. In that year, and thenceforward for centuries, the family 
seat was in the dale of Dent, a picturesque village in the West 
Riding of Yorkshire, on the border of Westmoreland. Before the 
end of the sixteenth century, however, some of the family removed 
to Wisbech in the Isle of Ely, in Cambridgeshire, where they set- 
tled. By this branch, to which Robert Sedgwick appears to have 
belonged, was adopted the spelling of the family name which is 
retained to the present time. He was the son of William Sedg- 
wick, a Warden of St. Mary's Church at Woburn, in Bedfordshire, 
and was born in 1611. As appears by the Registers of the church, 
he was baptized there 6 May, 1613. His father's marriage to 
Elizabeth Howe, 10 April, 1604, and burial, 25 July, 1632, are 
recorded in the same Registers. 1 After some military training and 
other experiences, of which no details have reached us, but which 
tended to make of him a sturdy Independent in religion, Sedgwick 
flung himself, at the age of twenty-four, into that strong Puritan 
tide which was then setting to the congenial rocks of the New 
England shore. 

On his arrival, in 1636, he was admitted (3 June) an Inhabitant 
of Charlestown, Massachusetts, then vigorously emulating the 
enterprise of its important neighbor Boston, and there he estab- 
lished himself as a merchant. Of the surname and previous his- 
tory of his wife Johanna there is no known record. On the ninth 
of March, 1636-37, he was made a Freeman of the Colony, and 
chosen Captain for Charlestown. In the same year, and also in 
the years 1638-1644, 1648 and 1649, he was chosen a Deputy to 
the General Court. In 1643 he was one of the Selectmen of 
Charlestown, and throughout his residence in the town was in- 
fluential in its affairs, and active in promoting the public weal. 
His house was in the Market Place on or near the present site 
of the Bunker Hill National Bank building. 2 

1 New England Historical and Genealogical Register for April, 1888, xlii. 
184, 185. 

2 Sedgwick afterwards removed to Boston, where he owned a house and 
garden on Washington Street, the estate being contiguous, on the north, to that 
on the corner of School Street, a part of which is now # (1895) the site of the 
"Old Corner Book-Store." Cf. Boston Record Commissioners' Reports, ii. 192 

1895.] ROBERT SEDGWICK. 157 

"The first Sergeant-Major chosen to order the regiment of Essex, 
was Major Robert Sedgwick, stout and active in all feats of war, nurst 
up in London's Artillery Garden, and furthered with fifteen years expe- 
rience in N. E. exact theory, besides the help of a very good head- 
piece, being a frequent instructor of the most martial troops of our 
Artillery men. Although," continues Johnson, from whose quaint 
chronicle we quote, " Charles Town ... do not advantage such o'er- 
topping batteries as Boston doth, yet hath he [Sedgwick] erected his 
to very good purpose, insomuch that all shipping that comes in . . . 
must needs face it all the time of their coming in. The cost he hath 
been at in helping on the discipline of his regiment hath profited much." x 

This zeal for the service procured him the gratitude and affec- 
tion of the soldiers, which were manifested by the trainband's giv- 
ing him, with the unstinted liberality of those who bestow what 
does not belong to them, a piece of land in Chaiiestown, the title to 
which, fortunately for him, was afterwards confirmed by the town. 

The so-called " Blue Laws " of Connecticut at this period have 
an invidious but scarcely deserved pre-eminence in evil fame over 
those of her New England sister colonies. Indeed, as we are told 
by Mr. Charles Deane in his chapter on New England, in Winsor's 
Narrative and Critical History of America, the twelve capital 
laws of the Connecticut colony, established in 1642, were taken 
almost literally from the one hundred laws called " The Body of 
Liberties," established by the General Court of Massachusetts in 
1641. The legislation against graver offences, and the rough 
paternalism of the law-makers of those days, characteristically 
unlike that of the modern " American System," among other 
moral therapeutics of the heroic sort, subjected children over six- 
teen to the possible punishment of death for " cursing or smiting " 
their parents, 2 or even for being " stubborn or rebellious " 3 to 
them. Though in truth not outdone by the maligned Code of 
Draco, this might be paralleled in the old statute books of the 
mother country. We need not stop to shudder at a theoretical 
severity of discipline seldom or never enforced, and which cer- 
tainly did not affect the domestic life of Robert Sedgwick's family ; 

and iii. 2 ; Wyman's Genealogies and Estates of Charlestown, ii. 852 ; and 
Memorial History of Boston, i. 399, ii. xxxiv. 

1 Wonder- Working Providence of Sion's Saviour in New England (Poole's 
edition), p. 192. 

2 General Laws of New Plymouth, chap. ii. sec. 13, p. 245. 

3 Ibid. chap. ii. sec. 14, p. 245. 


but so much of the legislation of the day as related to extrava- 
gance or unsuitableness of attire came nearer home. Greek, 
Roman, and English civilizations have all had, from time to 
time, virtuous spasms resulting in the adoption of this kind of 
laws; but the sumptuary enactments of our Puritan fathers, 
perversely following the total abandonment of the same species 
of legislation by the mother country, though keeping a reasonable 
eye to the main chance, and indicating a lingering liking for the 
discarded privileges of aristocracy, were very characteristic of our 
canny ancestors, and certainly tended to restrict the profits of 
Sedgwick's business. 

"Although," declares the General Court, " we acknowledg it to be 
a matter of much difficulty ... to set down exact rules to confine all 
sorts of persons, yet we cannot but account it our duty ... to declare 
our utter detestation . . . that men or women of mean condition 
should take upon them the garb of Gentlemen, ... or points at their 
knees, or to walk in great boots, or women of the same ranke to wear 
silk or tyffany hoods or scarfes, which though allowable to persons of 
greater estates, or more liberal education, yet we cannot but judg it 
intollerable in persons of such like condition. " 

The Court therefore orders — 

" That no person within this jurisdiction, nor any of their relations 
depending upon them, whose visible estates real and personal shall not 
exceed the true and indifferent value of two hundred pounds, shall weare 
any gold or silver lace or gold and silver buttons, or any bone lace 
above two shillings per yard, or silk hoods or scarfs, upon the penalty 
of ten shillings for every such offence. . . . And forasmuch as distinct 
and particular rules in this case suitable to the estate or quality of each 
person cannot easily be given," the Court orders "the Selectmen of 
every town, or the major part of them, . . . from time to time to . . . 
take notice of [the] apparel of any of the inhabitants of their several 
Townes respectively, and whosoever they shall judg to exceed their 
raukes and abilities in the costlines or fashion of their apparel in any 
respect, especially in the wearing of Ribbons or great boots (leather 
being so scarce a commoditie in this country), lace, points, &c, silk 
hoods or scarfes, the Selectmen aforesaid shall have power to assess 
such persons so offending in any of the particulars above mentioned, 
in the country rates, at two hundred pounds' estates, according to that 
proportion that such men use to pay to whom such apparel is suitable 
and allowed." 

1895.] ROBERT SEDGWICK. 159 

By a shrewd proviso, however, it was declared that the law 
should — 

"not extend to the restraint of any Magistrate or public officer of 
this jurisdiction, their wives and children, who are left to their dis- 
cretion in wearing of apparel, or any settled Millitary officer or souldier 
in the time of millitary service or any other whose education and em- 
ployment have been above the ordinary degree, or whose estate [shall] 
have been considerable though now decayed. " 1 

The amount of profit on the sale of cloth was rigorously re- 
stricted. In 1639 Mr. Sedgwick in his capacity of a merchant 
was admonished for selling goods too high. Indeed, he can hardly 
have avoided some embarrassment in harmonizing his gains as a 
thrifty tradesman with his duties as a Selectman in detecting and 
repressing extravagance. While it is not mentioned that he con- 
curred as a magistrate in the warning which he received as a 
draper, it does not appear that his offence was repeated. 

Soon after his arrival Sedgwick aided in forming the Ancient 
and Honorable Artillery Company. In 1641 he was chosen its 
Captain, an office which he also held in 1645 and 1648. It is worth 
noting that when he and Francis Norton became inhabitants of 
Charlestown and undertook the training of its trainband, the town 
was relieved from the payment of the "twenty shillings a time" 
that it had previously paid "to the renowned Captains, Patrick 
and Underhill," for this service. 2 In the first of these years Cap- 
tain Sedgwick was assigned to the command of the fortress which 
seven years before had been built on an island in Boston Harbor, 
and was known as the Castle. On its site is now Fort Indepen- 
dence. In 1645 he was commissioned to take charge of the fortifi- 
cations of the town, and to keep it and the harbor " from all hostile 
and mutinous attempts or insurrections." In May, 1652, he was 
chosen Major-General of the Colony. 

Nor in the arts of peace was Sedgwick less successful. He was 
enterprising in trade, useful in the town and popular with the 
citizens. In association with others and also alone, he built ships, 
warehouses, and wharves. He was engaged with " Deacon Stit- 

1 The Colonial Laws of Massachusetts reprinted from the edition of 1660 
(Whitmore's edition), p. 123. 

2 Frothingham's History of Charlestown, p. 97. 


son " l as owner and builder of the Tide Mill at Middlesex landing 
in Charlestown, and with John Winthrop, Jr., in the first furnace 
and iron works at Lynn. With Mr. Increase Nowell and others, 
he took an active part in having a new meeting-house built. In 
1638 he owned a goodly number of lots in, and a tract of land 
adjoining, Charlestown, including " eight score acres " at the north- 
east point of the town bordering the Boston line and embracing a 
part of Lynn. If tins domain had come down to his descendants 
tax-paid, it would have made them perfectly comfortable even at 
the present rates of living. 

In 1642 Sedgwick aided in setting off: Charlestown Village, 
under the name of Woburn, 2 from the parent town, as is attested in 
the Woburn records by some beautiful verses, of which the poets 
of this Society must be content with the following specimen : — 

" In peniles age I Woburne Towne began 
Charles Towne first moued the Court my lins to span 
To vewe my land place, compild body Reare 
Nowell, Sims, Sedgwick, thes my paterons were." 3 

In 1648 the customs on wines at the port of Boston were let to 
Sedgwick and others for £120, and evidently yielded the associates 
a fair income. From his trade, his mill, his iron foundry and 
farming of the revenue he derived a comfortable income, which 
enabled him to live well and practise charity. His contributions 
to the town school were liberal, and in 1642 he gave £40 to the 
infant college at Cambridge, — which, trifling as it seems to-day, 
was by far the largest pecuniary donation then or for years after re- 
ceived by it since its foundation by John Harvard's noble bequest. 
Four years later, he conveyed to it "two shops standing by the 
ordinary called the Ship's Tavern [Boston], under lease for fifteen 
years at ten shillings sterling," which term was afterwards ex- 
tended five years more by President Dunster. 4 

Stern in his religion, as then befitted a Puritan nonconformist, 
Mr. Sedgwick yet scorned the atrocious bigotry of the legislation 

1 William Stilson's name was often spelled " Stitson " and " Stetson " in the 
early records. See Wy man's Genealogies and Estates of Charlestown, ii. 902. 

2 The town was named by Capt. Edward Johnson in honor of his friend and 
" pateron " Sedgwick, who, as we have seen, was a native of Woburn, in Bedford- 
shire, England. See Ilnrd's History of Middlesex County, Massachusetts, i. 336. 

8 Wonder-Working Providence (Poole's edition), p. lxxxvi. Frothingham 
(History of Charlestown, p. 108) interprets the phrase "compild body reare" 
as meaning " my compact body to rear." 

4 Qnincy's History of Harvard University, i. 271, 511. 

1895.] ROBERT SEDGWICK. 161 

of the day. So early as 1643 he united in a petition to the General 
Court to repeal the cruel laws against the Anabaptists. The Court 
curtly answered that these laws " should not be altered or explained 
at all," and three years later granted a counter petition for their 
more effectual enforcement. 

Early in 1654, having returned to England on a visit, General 
Sedgwick fell under the notice of Cromwell, who with his wonted 
shrewdness perceiving the colonist's civil and military capacity, 
appointed him and Captain John Leverett to the charge of an 
expedition against the Dutch on "Hudson's River and at the 
Manhatoes." These Commissioners on 17 June, 1654, met other 
Commissioners from the General Courts at New Haven and Con- 
necticut for the arrangement of the campaign. Immediately after, 
however (20 June), news arrived of the conclusion of peace be- 
tween England and the United Provinces. 

The ship in which the Commissioners had come met with head- 
winds and had a slow passage, so that the vessel which brought 
the announcement of the peace arrived almost as soon. Sedgwick, 
always devout, and a firm believer in the conduct of human affairs 
by the direct agency of Heaven, writes to Cromwell, 1 July, 1654 : 

" When I considered the vareious and strainge turnes in God's workings 
and dealeings with us in our voyage, it makes me now beleive, and ap- 
prehend, that hee stood in our way . . . causeing our voyage to be longer 
then is usuall at that season of the yeare, and bringing in that shipp, 
that brought newes of peace, with a short and prosperous voyage." 1 

He was a Cromwellian after the Protector's own heart, pious in 
thought, Scriptural in language and resolute in action, although he 
had a tender nature, and preferred the sword of the Lord to that of 
Gideon. His report, like all his official correspondence, betrays a 
trust in God which was absolute, and, under Him, in the Lord Pro- 
tector, which was less unwavering though doubtless as sincere. 

The close of hostilities with Holland caused the release of a 
Dutch prize General Sedgwick had captured off the coast of Eng- 
land, and Cromwell's vigorous preparations to attack the Dutch 
were turned against the French. " The restoration of Acadie to 
France, in 1632, had not been agreeable," says Murdoch, 2 " to the 
republicans in old or new England." Disregarding the trifling 

1 A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe (Birch's edition), London, 
1742, ii. 419. 

2 History of Nova Scotia, i. 126. 



circumstance that it was a time of profound peace between Eng- 
land and France, Oliver gave secret orders that when the Dutch 
colony should have been reduced, Nova Scotia should be con- 
quered. On hearing of the Dutch treaty, therefore, it was deter- 
mined, in June, 1654, by the Commissioners in Boston, to annex 
Acadia. It may be said in excuse that the title to this fair prov- 
ince was in a rather loose and fluctuating condition, as was apt 
to be the case with North American territorial titles at that day. 
The Sieur d'Aunay de Charnisay had claimed all Acadia on the 
ground, apparently, of prior occupation. Emmanuel le Borgne, 
having recovered against him a judgment for 260,000 livres (or 
francs), proceeded to try to enforce it by the seizure of the whole 
province. 1 

At this juncture, July, 1654, Sedgwick, with strong Oliver at his 
back, appeared on the scene and superseded both titles by the appli- 
cation of — 

" The good old rule, the simple plan, 

That he should take who has the power, 

And he should keep who can." 

Sedgwick, as a subordinate faithfully executing orders, ought 
not to be held responsible for the iniquity, if such there were, of 
this invasion. It is the glory of the soldier's fidelity that it is 
unquestioning. " Theirs not to reason why" applies to officers 
under orders as to privates in the ranks. Even if "thrice is he 
armed that hath his quarrel just," the soldier's gallantry is not tar- 
nished by the injustice or arrogance of his governors. If it were 
so, how often would the red coats of the long line of English 
heroes be stained a darker dye ! So far, indeed, as Sedgwick was 
entitled to question the rightfulness of the campaign, he may well 
have accepted the theory, which was especially prevalent in those 
cold but quarrelsome latitudes, that every Englishman was in a 
state of normal hostility to every Frenchman. This theory took 
much of its local vigor from the circumstance that in 1605, two 
years after Henry IV. of France had generously granted to a 
gentleman of his household all of North America between 40° and 
46° north latitude, James I. of England, with rival generosity, 
granted to some of his English subjects all the territory of the 
same continent between 34° and 45° north latitude, — embracing 
five parallels of the French grant. 

1 Murdoch's History of Nova Scotia, i. 124. 

1895.] BOBEttT SEDGWICK. 163 

Leverett, writing to Cromwell from Boston 5 September, 1654, 
announces that " the Lord has vindicated the blasphemy of those 
who had given it out among the Indians that the English were 
so and so valiant and victorious against the Dutch at Sea, but 
that one Frenchman could beate ten Englishmen ashore." These 
Gallic illusions, if they existed, were dissipated by the successive 
capture by General Sedgwick of the Forts of St. John and Port 
Royal in July, 1654, — the first with a force not exceeding that 
of the besieged, and the second with but half the number of the 
garrison. In St. John, " seventy fighting men, eighteen pieces of 
ordnance, and several busses," and in Port Royal, " a hundred and 
fifty men with eighteen pieces of ordnance, besides small stock 
fowlers and busses, also ammunition a good quantity," were 
captured. Thence, with a fleet of four ships, General Sedgwick 
sailed to Penobscot. This place had been taken from the Plymouth 
men about eighteen years before by the French, who had strongly 
fortified it. On the second of September following, it surrendered 
with eight pieces of ordnance, three smaller pieces, and a good 
supply of ammunition. This success completed the reduction of 
Acadia, which, although destined to revert temporarily to the French 
before its final incorporation with the British empire, was thence- 
forward to be known by the name Nova Scotia, by which the 
English had a few years before baptized it. The General Court 
of Massachusetts, though entertaining a doubt whether Sedgwick 
had not exceeded his commission, " appointed a publick ' and 
solemn thanksgiving to the Lord for his gracious working " for 
the Commonwealth. 

Cromwell, far from finding fault with Sedgwick's vigorous pro- 
ceedings, after issuing a proclamation 1 by which civil government 
was established and all duties and imposts were remitted for a 
period of seven years in the lately captured island of Jamaica, 
despatched him with a fleet to reinforce the troops stationed there 
under Generals Penn and Venables. 

On Sedgwick's arrival at Barbadoes after a prosperous voyage, 
he found that General Venables had been repulsed from Hispani- 
ola with a loss of from four hundred to five hundred men. Pur- 
suant to an order from General Penn awaiting him at Barbadoes, 
after taking provisions at that island, Sedgwick united his forces 

1 Thurloe, iii. 753. 


with those of Venables, and proceeded to Jamaica, touching by the 
way at St. Christopher's, and passing near enough to San Domingo 
to observe people in arms engaged in building earthworks. 

The Puritans, notwithstanding the thoroughness of their dis- 
cipline when concentrated under an iron leader like Cromwell, 
were Independents in their military as in their religious notions, 
and Sedgwick found at Jamaica a medley of officers in a divided 
and loose command. The fleet was under Admiral William Good- 
sonn, and the army under Major-General Fortescue, General 
Penn, General Venables, Commissioner Butler, and others. The 
authority of Sedgwick's Commission, however, was promptly recog- 
nized by these officers; and the only obstacle to a harmonious 
conduct of affairs was in the scruples of Sedgwick himself, who 
entertained a doubt as to the supremacy of his command, arising 
perhaps in part from disinclination to assume so grave a respon- 
sibility. A provision in the constitution of the Commission as 
originally appointed by the Protector allowed " no act but what 
was acted on by three or in some cases by two." Commissioner 
Butler relinquished his position, and but for a belief that it was 
his duty not to allow the objects of the expedition to be defeated 
by technical conflicts of authority, Sedgwick would willingly have 
yielded his supremacy. All the officers were indeed unselfish, and 
an instrument 1 was mutually executed by them establishing a gov- 
ernment by a Supreme Executive Council, with Sedgwick at the 
head. This Constitution Sedgwick transmitted to Cromwell for 
his approval. In his reports to the Protector, he gives a graphic 
picture of the state of things discovered by him. The fleet was 
in good health and condition. Admiral Goodsonn had landed 
at St. Martin's, taken and demolished two forts, and plundered 
and burnt the town. It was a gallant action, says Sedgwick, 
" although," he adds, — betraying the courageous kindliness of his 
nature, of which frequent instances are found even in the scanty 
details of his life which have come down to us, — " in my judgment 
it is not so honourable that your highness's fleet should follow this 
old trade of West-India cruisers and privateers to ruin and plun- 
der poor towns, and so leave them." 2 

Sedgwick's report of the army is deplorable enough. Of the 
soldiers large numbers were dead, — 

i Thurloe, iv. 152. 2 Ibid. iv. 152, 153. 

1895.] EOBEET SEDGWICK. 165 

" the carcasses lying unburied in the highways and among bushes. 
Many of them," he writes, " that were alive walked like ghosts of dead 
men, who as I went through the town lay groaning and crying out 
4 Bread for the Lord's sake ! ' Unless God in his mercy stay his hand, 
will all perish, and be as water spilled upon the grass, that cannot be 
gathered up again. Greatest part sick — those set down as well, piti- 
fully well. Of Col. Humphrey's regiment landed 831 lusty men, 50 are 
dead. Officers all sick and weak. Young men in appearance well, in 
three or four days in the grave. Soldiers die, I believe, a hundred and 
fifty a week. The truth is, God is angry and the plague is begun, and 
we have none to stand in the gap. . . . My heart and soul grieveth when 
I think of Hispaniola business, one or two negroes to make five hundred 
Englishmen fling clown their arms and run away. Oh tell it not in 
Gath, nor publish it in Askelon, lest the uncircumcised rejoice. The 
truth is you cannot conceive us so sad as we are, broken and scattered, 
a senseless hearted people, not affected with his dealing with us." * 

No sooner had the expedition settled itself than Major-General 
Fortescue died. Sedgwick thereupon made Colonel D'Oyley 
commander of the forces for three months, or till the Protector's 

As to the country, it is the old story. All save the spirit of 
man was divine. 

The island, writes Sedgwick, seems desirable, productive, full of 
cattle. The English have killed twenty thousand, and they are now so 
wild it is not easy to kill them. Our soldiers have destroyed all sorts 
of fruits, provision, and cattle. Nothing but ruin attending them 
wherever they go. 

There is a considerable number of Mulattoes and blacks, and some 
Spaniards — some say a thousand, and some two. What God will do 
with them or with us by them I know not, but I have thought some- 
times they may do us a mischief. He warns the Protector that there 
is nothing left for carrying on the work but two field-pieces and a few 
great guns. The garrison, he writes, is dwindling. The enemy is 
threatening. If there were planters it might be well. Soldiers should 
be employed or sent home. They will rather starve than work. Unless 
more provision be supplied, they will perish for want of food. I humbly 
beg that your highness would cast an eye this way, that these poor people 
be not made a sacrifice to an enraged enemy. 2 

1 Thurloe, iv. 155. 2 Ibid. 


In the same letter Sedgwick avows his belief in the piety and 
justice of Cromwell's plans, in terms which, though evidently 
heartfelt, seem to suggest that he was aware of the doubt which 
the Protector's enemies then entertained, as some of his critics 
have since done, as to his sincerity. 

" I left my native land and my dear relations in some singleness of 
heart and eyeing God and his glory in this venture, hoping he might 
have some design in hand to the accomplishment of that, which hath so 
long time been the prayer, and desire of his people ; and also thinking 
God might have carried your spirit to that purpose, to attend this work. 
I was satisfied [with] the work itself, taken much with the honesty of 
your highness's expressions, and that religious discourse came from 
you out of a heart, as I believe, unfeigned, which made me believe 
God would own the design, and prosper it." * 

Again he says : — 

"I am fully satisfied of your highne's [sic] pious and religious inten- 
tions in this design ; yet God may disappoint expectations in many par- 
ticulars, but in the issue magnifying his special love and grace." 2 

A striking passage reminds us of Lincoln's immortal words in 
the reference to slavery in his second inaugural address : — 

" The righteousness of God's dealings and proceedings with us may 
early, I think, be discerned, and be justified in his actions towards us. 
He is a pure and holy God, and delights in pure and clean actings of 
the people professing his name. I must still say, O, how just art Thou, 
O God ! in all thy works, and righteous to the sons of man." 3 

Sedgwick's heart was oppressed by the suffering and unthrift 
everywhere on the islands, and he was appalled at the inadequacy 
of the means for the serious undertaking confided to him ; not- 
withstanding his honest faith in Oliver, he evidently questioned 
whether the great immediate destruction of human life was not 
out of all proportion to the ultimate gain to Great Britain and 
mankind. Coming events cast their shadows before, and he felt a 
premonition that his life would sink under the burden the Protec- 
tor had laid upon him. "I am sometimes," he writes, "sick, and 
think I may fall away among the rest of my countrymen, and durst 
do no other than plainly to let your highness know our condition." 
i Thurloe, iv. 155. 2 j bidt 3 7^ 

1895.] EOBEET SEDGWICK. 167 

Of his master he makes two requests, which proved his last : 

" One is, if God spare me life, that your highness would be pleased 
to admit me to come to England. But I am not very solicitous as 
to that; sometimes thinking that another place will be my portion 
before I hear again from your highness. 

" The other petition is, I left behind me a dear and religious wife, 
who through grace hath much of the fear and knowledge of God in her. 
I have also five children, to me dear and precious. I would only beg 
this, that whatever hazard or hardship I may go through, my relations 
may not be forgotten. I only expect what your highness was pleased 
to promise me, that they may not be troubled in obtaining it in such 
seasons, as may tend to her comfort." 1 

He pledges himself to " continue the business under the instru- 
Lent drawn up, hoping very speedily to receive further orders, 
'ou shall find me," he adds, "willing according to those talents 
r hich God giveth me, to give myself to the utmost I can to be ser- 
iceable in the present employment which God hath cast me in." 2 
On 24 January, 1655-56, he writes to Secretary Thurloe, — 

" I must profess I am not able to discover or make out to myself 
what God intends in this business ; only this I am willing to believe 
and hope, God may lay us low in the dust, and humble our souls be- 
fore him, and if thereby he may be pleased to prepare our spirits for 
some more glorious carrying on to the end his work, it will in the issue 
be a mercy. But hitherto God hath torn us, and scattered us, yet 
seems not to bind us up, or heal us. Did you but see the faces of the 
poor, small army with us, how like skeletons they look, it would move 
pity ; and when I consider the thousands laid in the dust in such a way 
as God hath visited, my heart mourns. I know this work could not be 
expected to be carried on without the loss of many men's lives ; yet if 
God should sweep us away, as if he would take no delight in us, what 
may we think? It is true," he continues, " we may with our fleet and a 
few soldiers waste and burn towns and places of inferior rank, but that 
can procure little profit unless God cast in some considerable ships in 
our hands. . . . Some have been apt to think that if the money spent 
in this design had been laid out in lying upon the coast of Spain, it 
might have brought the Indies to have bowed to easy terms ; but that 
I waive. . . . 

i Thurloe, iv. 155. 2 Ibid. hi. 151. 


4 'It is possible you may count me despondent, . . . yet . . . never 
man heard me discourage the work, but do and shall to the uttermost 
encourage and strengthen the hearts and hands of any employed in this 
affair. I have been thought too bitter in reproving the despondency of 
men's spirits in this business." x 

With melancholy frankness Sedgwick asserts his unfitness for 
the work before him, which, he says, he should not have under- 
taken if he had not expected to find associates of greater abilities 
than he has, and begs that men be sent " of approved goodness, 
and of sound and solid judgment, and able pens, which are ex- 
tremely wanting amongst us." 

On the same date a detailed report by Sedgwick, jointly with 
Vice-Admiral Goodsonn, to the Protector, describes the continued 
decline and wretched condition of the army, which is still losing 
not less than fifty men a week, and is reduced to less than three 
thousand. A depredation of the kind that Sedgwick in a former 
communication had deprecated, had been inflicted on the north side 
of the island, where a few firearms and one mulatto had been cap- 
tured ; but the invader's means had been inadequate to renew the 
attempt at the taking of St. Jago de Cuba, in which Venables had 
failed, or for any other serious enterprise. This report, like all the 
others of Sedgwick and his associates, was full of the pious Puri- 
tanism which has so long, in fact as well as in expression, disap- 
peared from such papers both in the new and old worlds. " Let 
the Lord," say these devout captains, " send by whom he pleases, 
we believe you have an interest in Heaven, and hope we are the 
subject of your prayers ; we stand in as much need thereof as 
ever poor people did ; an anchor cast within the vale will hold ; if 
Christ own us, we continue and conquer." On the twelfth of 
March following, the same officers, in another long report to the 
Protector, announce that the army, though reduced to twenty- 
five hundred men, is in better condition. " But if his highness 
resolve to proceed in this great design, he must in a manner begin 
the work again." 2 More soldiers and settlers and more provisions 
were needed. D'Oyley, in writing to Thurloe, complains bitterly 
of the want of liquor, — " the waters of the country breeding 
dropsies and other distempers, and nothing to be bought of the 
seamen but at treble rates." 

* Thurloe, iv. 451. 2 Ibid. iv. 600. 

1895.] ROBERT SEDGWICK. 169 

On the same date Sedgwick, in a separate communication, 
reports to Thurloe a " better outlook." " Though some still die, 
and many are weak, yet generally they recruit strength — a mar- 
velous great mercy." He has had, he writes, "not a few revolu- 
tions and turnings of heart about our business, and . . . sometimes 
been willing to go to Heaven, to the God of Counsel, what advice 
and which way to act." But he still struggles with perplexities 
and anxieties. 

"Fleet," he writes, " not over-manned. . . . Seamen on shore in 
land service are so extremely uncommanded and undisciplined in that 
service that it may be ruinous to them. If we fall on small towns, it 
is true we may burn and destroy the estate of our enemies ; but by 
attempting such a course it will be prejudicial, as I conceive, to the 
great ends proposed. We are not able to possess any place we may 
attack, and so cannot dispense any knowledge of the true God in Jesus 
Christ to the inhabitants, but rather render ourselves to the Indians and 
blacks a. cruel, bloody, ruinating people when they can see nothing from 
us but fire and sword . . . and cause them to think worse of us than 
of the Spaniards. . . . 

"The inhabitants run away, carrying their treasure. The plunder 
does not pay for the powder and shot spent. The seamen are brave, 
but the army is worse than would have been thought possible for Puritan 
and English soldiers. . . . Our army in general," he writes, " I believe 
they are not to be parallelled in the world, a people so basely unwor- 
thy, laz}', and idle, as it cannot enter the heart of any Englishman that 
such blood did run in the veins of any born in England." Those in 
command are nearly as bad as the men. " Officers say soldiers won't, 
when it is most certain they are not willing they should, but still stand 
gaping to go off the island as after a gaol-delivery." x 

Sedgwick had received from the Protector two main injunctions 
for effecting the subjugation of the island, — namely, fortification 
and plantation; but under the sad conditions prevailing, little 
could be done towards fulfilling them. By great exertions, how- 
ever, some progress was made. " A fort," he writes, " is almost 
finished — as good as the materials will permit, and may prove 
useful." Other works are started, including a magazine and 
"small palisado for powder and ammunition," but all proceeds 
languidly. He exclaims : " Such kind of spirit breathing in 
Englishmen, I till now never yet beheld ; " and he adds : " I see 

1 Thurloe, iv. 604. 


a vast expense and no return, no, none at all, and methinks I 
see little will be, yet sometimes think God may return in mercy 
and yet own our people ; but on the other hand, sometimes am 
thinking he will not own his generation, but that they will die in 
the wilderness." 

The indolence and imbecility of the land forces are the more 
intolerable because the means of living are within their grasp. 
" The island if planted by industrious people would be exceed- 
ingly profitable." 

In closing he says : " I blush to think that the so-long progress 
of so gallant a design should produce no other return but letters 
filled with such kind of matter as tins." 1 

The wretched condition of affairs described in the foregoing 
report continued with slight fluctuations to the end of Sedgwick's 
life. His sensitive nature soon gave way under the strain to 
which he was subjected. By the weird legerdemain of fate, the 
same fiat of the Lord Protector which raised him to the head of 
the expedition buried him in the grave. 

After the death of General Fortescue, who had been in charge of 
affairs in Jamaica, Cromwell sent a commission to Sedgwick giving 
him supreme command. Discontent had broken out among the sol- 
diery, and three mutinous leaders had been executed. The laurel 
bestowed on him was mixed with cypress, and boded ill to his anx- 
ious spirit. He concealed the news from those around him, espe- 
cially from Colonel D'Oyley, who at the time, in the absence of Ad- 
miral Goodsonn on a cruise, was in temporary command, and was 
eager for the preferment from which Sedgwick shrank. D'Oyley 
writes to the Protector, 20 June, 1656 : " He sent immediately upon 
the receipt of his commission to me, but told me nothing of the 
commission, but by his looks showed unusual dumpishness and 
confusion." After reporting Sedgwick's death, he adds : " I had 
the greatest loss in him, being now in the publique charge with- 
out your highness' commission." The closing scene is so striking 
as to justify the following extracts from a letter written, 25 June, 
1656, by Sedgwick's secretary, Aylesbury, to Thurloe : — 

" I came hither . . . with Major-General Sedgwicke, whose favor, which 
I enjoyed in a large degree, was as great an honor to me as his death 
was an unhappiness. I may truly sa}% never man had a more real 

1 Thurloe, iv. 604. 

18^5.] ROBEET SEDGWICK. 171 

friend or a greater losse. Yet I dd not so much bewaile myself as the 
publique, to which he was exceedingly useful, very generally beloved 
and esteemed by all sorts of people. He dyed upon the 24th of May, 
not of any visible great distemper, only a little feaverish ; and the 
morning it pleased God to take him from us, I as little apprehended his 
death as at any time since our departure from England. But his disease 
was inward ; he never enjoyed himselfe since the last letter, but as was 
apparent to all . . . from that time lost much of his freedome and 
cheerfulness. When he had perused his letters, having been private 
about two hours, he called me to him ; and when I came into the roome, 
perceiving a great alteration in his countenance, I asked him what was 
the matter. He replyed, i Ah ! Mr. Aylesbury, I have not, since we 
were together, concealed anything from you that most concerne me. . . . 
I am utterly undone. I have had the greatest conflict in my spirit that 
ever man had, and find I am not able to bear what is laid upon me.' 
' Sir/ sayd I again, ' what is the matter? ' 'Peruse these letters/ he re- 
plyed, ' and you will see.' I read one from his highnes, another from 
yourselfe, . . . after the perusal whereof sayd I, ' there is nothing con- 
tained in these that ought to afflict you. His highness hath made choice 
of you to command his army ; and both he and Mr. Secretary have ex- 
pressed so great an esteem of you, that on the contrary you have good 
cause to rejoice your endeavors have been so well accepted, and be 
thankful to God for it.' ' Ah ! Mr. Aylesbury,' said he again, ' it is 
that which undoes me. There is too much expected of me, and I, con- 
scious of my own disabilities, having besides so untoward a people to 
deale with, am able to perform so little, that I shall never overcome it; 
it will breake my heart/ and so, notwithstanding all the arguments I 
could use, I verily believe it did. He was a truly religious man, and of 
the most innocent conversation I ever accompauyed." 1 

In a letter written by Cromwell in June, 1656, to the com- 
manders in America, he announces the despatch of more regiments 
and provisions, reminds them of the vast charge of maintaining the 
fleet, gratefully " sees that the Lord has been pleased to smile on 
them in some measure in respect to the health of the soldiers," 
deplores the unworthy conduct of some officers in provoking the 
soldiers' discontent, and directs that " something be published by 
the commander-in-chief that no license of leaving the army on any 
terms be granted." To Sedgwick, as commander-in-chief, he wrote 
separately to the same effect. But these orders, worthy as they 

i Thurloe, v. 154. 


were of the great ruler whose foreign policy had made England 
more respected abroad than ever before, reached Jamaica only 
when Sedgwick was in his grave. Indeed, it was not till after the 
Protector's own death, which followed in a little more than two 
years, that the permanence of his conquest of Jamaica became 
finally assured. Still later was it that the insular government he 
established became a pillar, though never a very solid one, in the 
huge colonial fabric which he did so much to rear and consolidate. 
Sedgwick's premature death was deplored, as his piety and virtue 
had been recognized, by all his associates. Admiral Goodsonn, 
writing to Thurloe, 25 June, 1656, says : — 

"We arrived here the 23 d [of May]; where we found major-general 
Sedgwicke, who the next day after God was pleased to take to him- 
self ; a person, I have cause to believe truly feared God, and one whose 
losse we have reason to lament, being of singular use in this worke, and 
generally beloved of the souldiery." x 

Carlyle, after touching on " the deadly inextricable jungle of 
tropical confusions " and the sad sacrifices of the leaders, describes 
Sedgwick as " a very brave, zealous, and pious man, whose letters in 
Thurloe are of all others the best worth reading on this subject." 2 

Like many other delicately strung natures on which heavy 
responsibility has been suddenly flung, Sedgwick broke down 
under a load which a robuster nervous organization might have 
borne without wincing. Like the Prince of Denmark, he might 
have exclaimed, — 

" The time is out of joint ! O cursed spite, 
That ever I was born to set it right ! " 

The close of his life and his character are thus epitomized by the 
historian of Jamaica : — 

4 'The fortification at Caguay, or Port Royal Point, was now almost 
compleated, when the major-general, who was sick of his charge, wearied 
out with the refractory temper of the army and unprosperous condition 
of the colony, . . . received the Protector's order to take upon him the 
sole and supreme command. So undesirable a preferment was not more 
welcome to him than a death warrant. In short, when he reflected on 
the impossibility of his fulfilling the Protector's intentions with such 

1 Thurloe, v. 152. 

2 Cromwell's Letters and Speeches (Chapman and Hall edition, London, 
1870), iv. 171. 


miserable instruments, of whose unfitness for such a work he was fully 
sensible, . . . and perceived how much the Protector relied upon his single 
ability, he could not conquer his diffidence ; the chagrin so deeply preyed 
upon his spirits as to overwhelm him with melancholy ; and he died . . . 
within a very few days after receiving the orders. The general regret, 
which appeared in the fleet and army in consequence of this event, was a 
clear indication of his worth. The honesty of his heart, the mildness of 
his disposition, gentleness of manners and competence of understanding, 
qualified him to have been a most amiable governor over any well-settled 
and established colony. But he wanted that severity, firmness, and fire 
which were requisite to subdue and awe the stubborn, restive, and inso- 
lent spirits, that had long distracted the army in Jamaica." 1 

In the hecatomb of lives sacrificed during the sad and inglorious 
struggle for the retention of Jamaica, none was gentler or braver 
than that of Robert Sedgwick. Cromwell's major-general united 
with fine and noble qualities that self-depreciation which, due or 
undue, has marked some of his descendants, — especially Major- 
General John Sedgwick, who died the idol of the Sixth Corps of 
the Army of the Potomac after thrice declining the supreme com- 
mand of that army. 

Mr. Charles Sedgwick Rackemann said : — 

In view of the fact that Robert Sedgwick was prevented, by his 
untimely death in Jamaica, from returning to Charlestown, where, 
prior to his departure, he had so many personal and property 
interests, it is worth while to note that, two and a half centuries 
later, the title to some of the same lands of which he was a part 
owner was questioned, and became the subject of litigation which 
was carried to the Supreme Judicial Court, 2 and that three of the 
lineal descendants of General Sedgwick were employed by the Rail- 
road Company which asserted title to these lands and successfully 
maintained its claim. These three men are all members of the 
Suffolk Bar, — namely, the present William Minot, who was junior 
counsel in the conduct of the case ; his younger brother, Robert 
Sedgwick Minot; and myself. The "Report" of the case, so 
called, by which it was reserved for the consideration of the full 
bench, contains an interesting summary of the state of the early 
title. This Report is not printed in the volume just referred to 

1 Long's History of Jamaica, i. 257. 

2 Eastern Railroad Company v. Allen, 135 Massachusetts, 13 (a. d. 1883). 


(135 Massachusetts Reports), which contains the opinion of the 
court upon the law questions involved ; but it is on file, with the 
briefs of counsel and other papers, in the Social Law Library. 

The lease made by General Sedgwick of the Charlestown Tide 
Mills, being the estate in question, is dated 1645. 1 The lessee 
there named was John Fownell. From this lease, and subsequent 
papers relating to the title, it appears that the original proprietors 
of these lands were Robert Sedgwick, owning one eighth ; Wil- 
liam Stitson, 2 one eighth ; Thomas Coytemore, five eighths ; and 
John Coggan, one eighth. 

At the time when the case was in court, no will of Robert Sedg- 
wick had been found. He probably left none, as administration 
on his estate was granted in England, 30 September, 1656, 3 to his 
widow, Johanna Sedgwick, who, in the following year, was living 
at Stepney, near London. Mr. Waters, however, has found the 
will of John Sedgwick, brother of Robert. I suppose that our own 
General John Sedgwick, already referred to to-day, may have been 
named for General John Sedgwick of the Revolutionary Army, 
brother of Judge Theodore Sedgwick, and he, in turn, for this 
brother of the emigrant. 

Mr. Henry H. Edes communicated the following letter 
of the Rev. Samuel Cary, afterwards Assistant Minister of 
King's Chapel, Boston, prefacing it with these remarks : — 

Mrs. Sarah Atkins, of Newbury, to whom the following letter is 
addressed, was a woman of marked ability. She was the daughter 
of Col. Richard Kent and Hannah Gookin, whose first husband, by 
whom she had four children, was Vincent Carter, of Charlestown. 4 
Through her mother, Mrs. Atkins had a distinguished lineage, and 
also a social rank which was in no way affected by the sharp vicis- 
situdes of fortune that she experienced in her young widowhood. 
The Rev. Thomas Cary, long the minister of the Third Parish in 
Newbury, married Esther, a daughter of Nathaniel Carter (son of 
Vincent Carter), a half-brother of Mrs. Atkins; and the Rev. 
Samuel Cary, the writer of the letter I hold in my hand, was the son 
of this marriage. The warmest affection existed between the Car- 
ter and Kent kindred of the half blood; and although not lineally 

1 Massachusetts Archives, lix. 22. 2 Cf. ante, p. 160. note 1. 

8 New England Historical and Genealogical Register, January, 1SSS, xlii. 67. 

* Wyman's Genealogies and Estates of Charlestown, i. 180, 188, ii. 573. 


descended from Mrs. Atkins, Samuel Cary always called her 
" grandmother." Both, however, had the blood of Hannah Gookin, 
of whom I have just spoken. 

Mrs. Atkins's descendants are no less distinguished than was her 
ancestry, 1 and bear the honored names of Dexter, Dwight, Eliot, 
Higginson, Norton, Parkman, and Ticknor, not to mention others 
of our early Massachusetts families. 

A Memoir 2 of the Hon. Dudley Atkins Tyng (the fifth child of 
Dudley and Sarah (Kent) Atkins), by the Hon. John Lowell, con- 
tains the following tribute to this remarkable woman : — 

" Mr. Tyng's father having died at the early age of 37, under circum- 
stances of great embarrassment as a merchant, in no degree affecting his 
character as a man, the care of his whole family devolved, without other 
means than the resources of her own strong and vigorous mind, upon his 
widow, the late Mrs. Sarah Atkins. Those who, with us, had the happi- 
ness of knowing the energy, perseverance, and high intellectual character 
of this lady, will not be surprised at her surmounting difficulties which 
would have discouraged minds of less force, and that she not only pro- 
vided for the physical wants of her children, but imparted to them, by 
her example and precepts, what was of inestimable and unappreciable 
value to them, — intellectual and moral power; . . . Mrs. Atkins's 
efforts and usefulness were not, however, confined to her own family ; 
they shed a benign and most powerful influence upon all who enjoyed 
the delights of her society. A more radiant mind, one which exerted an 
higher influence on all around her, cannot easily be cited, — certainly 
fifty years' experience do not enable the writer to recall one whose moral 
efficacy was greater. We should not have dwelt upon this subject were 
it not that in our opinion much of Mr. Tyng's firmness of character, of 
his sterling integrity, and soundness of opinions, may be fairly traced to 
the influence of a mother whom no stranger ever visited without a con- 
scious improvement." 

The Rev. Samuel Cary, who graduated at Harvard College in 
1804, was a divinity student at Cambridge when he wrote the letter 
which I am about to communicate. He had already attracted the 
attention of scholars and theologians, as will be seen by the follow- 
ing extract from the Diary of the Rev. Dr. John Pierce, which re- 
cords an observation of Dr. James Freeman upon Mr. Cary's 
Commencement performance : — 

1 See Francis Higginson Atkins's Joseph Atkins, The History of a Family, 
pp. 57-71, 146-150. 

2 Printed in 3 Massachusetts Historical Collections, ii. 284, 285. 


" I never knew a better speaker. I have heard my classmate Rufus 
King, and all the eminent speakers since his time. But this young man 
in my estimation exceeds them all. I should rejoice to have him for my 

This wish of Dr. Freeman was gratified on the first of January, 

1809. 1 In a memorial sermon which he preached after Mr. Cary's 
death, Dr. Freeman said : — 

44 At Commencement there was assigned to him a honorable part, by 
which he excited attention and acquired reputation. In a subsequent 
performance, at the inauguration of President Webber, he rose still 
higher. His oration on that occasion has rarely been equalled, perhaps 
never excelled. The pronunciation of certain words was m such thrilling 
tones of eloquence that it charmed every classical ear "(p. 45). 

The selection of Mr. Cary as the orator at President Webber's In- 
auguration is interesting from the fact that Dr. Webber (who, when 
called to the Presidency of the College, was the Hollis Professor of 
Mathematics and Natural Philosophy, a position he had held since 
1789) was born in Byiield, which was in part a parish of Newbury. 

Mrs. Lincoln, who is so prominently mentioned in Mr. Cary's 
letter, was Mary, the accomplished daughter of James Otis the 
patriot, and wife of Benjamin Lincoln, Jr., of Boston, eldest son 
of Major-General Benjamin Lincoln, of Hingham. She had two 
sons, — Benjamin (H. C. 1806), a physician, also mentioned in the 
letter, who died of fever in Demerara, 17 August, 1813 ; and James- 
Otis (H. C. 1807), a lawyer, who died 12 August, 1818. The 
father of these boys was himself bred to the law and " gave promise 
of great distinction," but died in Boston, 18 January, 1788, at the 
age of thirty-one. His widow retired with her sons to Hingham, 
where she long abode. After a widowhood of nearly twenty years 
she married the Rev. Dr. Henry Ware, at Cambridge, 9 February, 

1807. 2 and died on the seventeenth of the same month. 3 
The text of Mr. Cary's letter is as follows : — 

1 An account of Mr. Cary's ministry is given in Foote's Annals of King's 
Chapel, ii. 407-416. 

2 Records of the First Church in Cambridge. For a short time previous to 
her second marriage, Mrs. Lincoln had been afflicted with melancholia, and fears 
were expressed (verified by the sad event) that she might die by her own 

8 Tudor 's Life of James Otis, pp. 19, 20 ; History of Hingham, iii. 0, 277 ; 
and Records of the Church in Brattle Square, Boston. 


Cambridge, March 19th, 1806. 

My dear Madam, — Your letter threw me into the precise situation 
in which the poets represent Tantalus, whose hunger was perpetually 
inflamed by the sight of luxuries which he was not allowed to taste. 
True I had a taste, but it served only to increase my desire for more ; 
and when I found that I was to have but 3 words and Mrs. Lincoln a 
huge packet, I was almost on the point of laying violent hands upon 
said packet. It seemed to me to be excessively large, larger than com- 
mon letters, as if it meant to laugh at mine ; it was as I may say (as 
Sheridan has it in one of his comedies) a malicious & designing looking 
letter. However I had the philosophy to abstain from doing it any 
harm, detriment or molestation, a thing as I take it not a little praise- 
worthy, inasmuch as any provocation is more tolerable than a sneer at 
our disappointments. But for all this, I could not help thinking that the 
letter was hardly safe in my hands, & therefore not knowing what might 
be the consequences, I determined to set off with it directly. Nothing 
cools the mind like a walk. On the way I began to think that though 
Mrs. Lincoln's letter might be longer, yet it might not be in your own 
hand-writing, & this thought was so perfectly to the point, that before I 
reached the house, I was not merely in a state of serenity, but had even 
acquired an air of triumph, with which I entered. When the facts were 
fairly explained, I had the satisfaction of hearing Miss Storrow 1 express 
something like jealousy at my being thus eminently favored ; & so the 
triumph of my letter over that of Mrs. Lincoln was complete. 

I have therefore to return a thousand thanks for it, and if I had the 
same power of giving pleasure by a letter that you have I would return 
some part of the gratification I have received from it. As it is, how- 
ever, my gratitude will be best shewn by saving you the trouble of read- 
ing a long letter, which shall be done if possible. In answer to the first 
part of your letter, it would be a matter of no small difficulty, if not 
impossible, to give you an accurate account of the late revolutions at 
this seat of the Muses ; for the election of Mr. Webber & the resignation 
of Dr. Pearson have so completely taken off the check from the tongues 
of the good people of this town & its vicinity, and such a torrent of 

1 Miss Ann Gillam Storrow is here referred to. She was born in Halifax, 
24 June, 1784, and died in Brattleborough, Vt., 20 May, 1862. She was the 
daughter of Capt. Thomas Storrow of the British Army by his wife, Ann Apple- 
ton, whose mother, Mary Wentworth, was granddaughter of Lieut. -Gov. John 
Wentworth, niece of Gov. Benning Wentworth, and cousin of Gov. John Went- 
worth of New Hampshire (Wentworth Genealogy, i. 513). Miss Storrow was a 
sister of Louisa Storrow, who married Stephen Higginson, Steward of Harvard 
College, and lived much in her family, where she was always addressed as 
I Aunt Nancy." 



stories, observations, remarks, criticisms & opinions has issued forth from 
all quarters, that a quiet person is in danger of receiving a very serious 
shock. I am fully of the mind that all evils eventually produce good, & 
such occurrences though not in themselves desirable excite in all parties 
such a spirit of talking as very essentially do promote health & cheer- 
fulness. I am not certain that you will consider this as very conclusive 
reasoning. I am however convinced that I should have been in great 
danger of sinking into dullness the last winter at Newbport [Newbury - 
port] if Dr. Dana * had not been civil enough to furnish the public with a 
topic of conversation. — Professor Pearson, notwithstanding his many & 
warm declarations of regard, esteem, love, affection, etc., for the Col- 
lege has thought proper to quit his post at the very time when, by his 
own account in a letter to the overseers, it is most in danger. They 
who infer a man's principles from his conduct, will not perhaps consider 
this step as the most striking proof he could have given of his sincerit}' ; 
unless he has had the wit to perceive that the only way to save the Col- 
lege was by withdrawing himself from any concern in its government. 
Now I am so wicked as not to believe that he possesses so great a 
degree of discernment. These professions of friendship for the students 
were repeated in his reply to their address and would have done very 
well, if he had not, as I have been told, in his letter to the overseers 
represented them in a deplorable situation, as youth of bad manners & 
in need of reformation, etc. Indeed this affectation of sincerity on 
both sides is extremely ludicrous. The students, who have for years 
past regarded him with the most cordial aversion & who are, as a 
body, delighted at his departure, had the assurance, to send him an 
address in which they expressed their respect for him & regret that 
he was about to leave them. He wrote a reply which was read in 
the College chapel, & to say the truth was very well done. It was 
full of good advice & abundance of passages from the Bible. He 
requested them & all his former pupils to excuse the occasional 
severities he had shewn in his criticisms on their compositions. They 
were made in haste & with the best intentions. That is to say, with 
a little circumlocution, My young friends, you have now got to years 
of discretion, & are I doubt not fully sensible that " folly is bound 
up in the heart of a child, but the rod of correction shall drive it 
from him ; " this rod it has been my peculiar business to handle, but 
take my word for it, it has been used with the utmost gentleness, etc. 

1 The Rev. Dr. Daniel Dana, afterwards President of Dartmouth College. 
He was pastor of the First Presbyterian Church in Newburyport (in a vault 
under the pulpit of which Whitefield is buried) from 1794 till 1S20. From 
182G till 1845 Dr. Dana ministered to the Second Presbyterian Church, the 
founders of which withdrew from the First Presbyterian Church because of 
dissatisfaction with his settlement over it thirty-two years before. 


Mr. Webber is a very good & learned man, & will make a respectable 
president, but I think the Corporation would have done better if they 
had filled the chair with a person who has a little more knowledge of 
men & dignity of character. Every body is pleased that he has got a 
better salary, & much of the pleasure consists in the prospect that his 
old cloak which makes a figure on Sunday, together with other orna- 
ments of himself & family will be committed to the flames with all 
possible expedition. 

Proceed we now to the third topic of your letter, & though not least, 
to wit Mrs. Lincoln. She is very well & always speaks of you. Your 
pine table I do assure you wants nothing but a poet to be immortalized. 
It is in all conversations, in all mouths. Here's a wonder. Your 
guests are not satisfied with putting the contents of the table upon their 
tongues, but they find room for the table itself. It certainly deserves 
to be transmitted to posterity. 1 But a poet in this part of the world 
would be shewn as a curiosity. We have, however, some hopes of Ben. 
Lincoln. Mrs. L. notwithstanding her sagacity seems sadly puzzled to 
account for the overturnings at College. She thinks that variety is 
charming, but not so confusion. 

After Mrs. Lincoln are two etc. etc.'s which as the lawyers say of 
Lord Coke's, are full of meaning. I comprehend the whole force of 
them, & perceive at once that untill they are fully treated upon, your 
letter is not to be considered as answered. I would proceed willingly, 
but the edge of the paper draws near me, & I must take the hint. 
I am, dear Madam 

Your obedient & affect, grandson Sam l . Cary. 


Mrs. Sarah Atkins. Favd. by 

Newbury. Rev. Mr. Andrews. 2 

Messrs. Lindsay Swift, of Boston, Charles Frank 
Mason, of Watertown, and Appleton Peentiss Clark 
Griffin, of Newton, were elected Kesident Members. 

1 One of Mrs. Atkins's descendants writes to me : " The table was of plain 
white pine, and always kept scoured to perfect whiteness. Mrs. Atkins was 
obliged to live very carefully, and probably set up her pine table because she 
could not afford cloths. They had honey in the comb, and, my mother said, no 
cake except the lightest sponge-cake. These simple things often charmed visi- 
tors, but I know not what Mrs. Lincoln saw there." 

2 The Rev. John Andrews, D.D., was colleague and successor to the Rev. 
Thomas Cary in the pastorate of the Third Parish of Newbury, now the First 
Parish of Newburyport. 



A Stated Meeting of the Society was held in the Hall 
of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences on 
Wednesday, 15 January, 1896, at three o'clock in the after- 
noon, Dr. Gould in the chair. 

The Records of the December Meeting were read and 

The President said that he had just heard, as he entered 
the Hall, of the death, last evening, of our associate, the 
Hon. Martin Brimmer, and that, unless some gentleman 
was prompted to speak at this time, an opportunity would 
be afforded at our next meeting to those who might wish to 
express their sense of the loss which the Society has met. 

Dr. George Lincoln Goodale read this paper on — 


In the course of certain studies relative to useful plants and 
their economic products, it has been necessary to examine some of 
the published accounts of New England vegetation given by 
early explorers and settlers. 

Most of the treatises made use of in the preparation of this paper 
are easily accessible, especially in the convenient authorized re- 
prints. The handful of gleanings now gathered from scanty and 
conflicting records can make no claim to exhaustive treatment; 
but it is possible that the more important botanical features pre- 
sented by them may, in their co-ordinated rearrangement, assume 
a new degree of interest. Our field is restricted mainly to New 

The subject may be cast in a convenient form by asking the 
following questions : — 

I. In what condition did the explorers and settlers probably 
find our vegetation? 


II. What use did they make of the plants they found ? 
III. What changes in vegetation followed their coming ? 

These questions have been stated in their natural order ; and yet 
a part of the last question must be put first, — namely, What Euro- 
pean plants did the very first comers, the Northmen, bring purposely 
or by accident? If all accounts which are at our command are 
thoroughly sifted, and the inherently improbable discarded, there 
remains a residue of probable though not provable statement of deep 
interest to naturalists. It is not necessary for us even to ask whether 
the Northmen ever carried back precious " mazur-wood " — which 
some have assumed to be burls of oak from our sandy Middlesex 
plains on the Charles — as the bulk of their homeward cargoes ; nor 
is it requisite for us to ascertain whether they made even temporary 
dwellings for themselves at any point from Labrador to Virginia. 
If they touched our coast at all, they changed its organic life. 
Such is the delicacy of balance in the wild life of plants and ani- 
mals, that it can be disturbed by the slightest causes. 

Confining ourselves to a consideration of the vegetable kingdom, 
we observe that the introduction of a single new plant may have 
weighty consequences. Such an intruder brings from its former 
home the vigor which belongs to all adventurers. It finds in its 
new home surroundings better in some respects than its old, and it 
is largely freed from its former animal foes. In short, if it is not in 
any wise dependent on insects for aid, as some plants are ; if it 
touches a soil at all congenial, and grows in a climate nearly like 
that of the skies under which the seed ripened, — it will thrive in its 
new habitat, and wage successful warfare with its new neighbors. 

It happens that in the eastern part of our country are found a 
few plants which are substantially identical with species of the Old 
World, and which by most botanists are regarded as indigenous. At 
least, these species were here when our earliest scientific observers 
began to make records of the plants they found. The coming of 
the Northmen antedated these observers by many centuries. Of 
course it is possible that the plants in question came, as our glacial 
species of the White Mountains and Labrador did, from the com- 
mon home in the north ; but it seems as if it were not absolutely 
necessary to look quite so far back as that. Again, it is possible that 
a few of these species now growing here at the north, especially 
those which nourish in wet grounds, may be descendants of plants 


which found their way with Columbus and his followers to the 
lands bordering the Spanish Main. Thence the seeds might have 
been brought northward, as it is well known seeds can be carried, 
in the mud clinging to the feet of migratory wading-birds. On 
this hypothesis, such plants may have had barely two centuries' 
start of the early collectors ; but it does not seem necessary to look 
quite so far south as that. If we could be sure that Northmen ever 
raised a single crop of grain upon our coasts, as many of the early 
explorers did, we could say, with a good degree of positiveness, 
that this might account for the presence of certain species of plants 
which began their life here as weeds of the field. But this attrac- 
tive domain of conjecture must not keep us from the less fabulous 
accounts of those who came later. 

Before we enter on this subject, still another preliminary inquiry 
must be made. At what date and in what form did accounts of our 
northern plants begin to find their way into European treatises ? 
Of course the plants discovered by southern explorers, and carried 
by them to Europe, early found a place in the rude botanical de- 
scriptions of those days. But only one of our New England and 
Canadian species was described until the latter half of the six- 
teenth century ; and up to the end of the century very little had 
been done in the way of accurately describing or delineating them. 
There was no treatise accessible in the English language which 
would have been likely to attract the attention of any seamen or 
settlers until 1636, when Johnson published his edition of Gerard's 
Herbal. This contains ten, or possibly twelve, species of our plants. 
Cornut's work on northern species, published in Latin about the 
same time, describes a larger number, and gives good figures of 
nearly forty. In other contemporaneous Latin works references to 
plants of the northern part of North America are very few, and 
were not likely to have been known to any of the explorers of that 
century. Hence it may be said that until about the time of the 
founding of Harvard College there was no available treatise in the 
English tongue referring to our botanical species. Nevertheless, in 
the earliest account of the course of study in Harvard, we read thus : 

" Afternoone. 
The first houre reads history in the winter. 
The nature of plants in the summer." * 

1 New England's First Fruits, 1 Massachusetts Historical Collections, i. 245. 


The latter would seem to be a bold step, considering there were no 
books describing the plants around the College ; but it is unlikely 
that this study of the nature of the plants was what we should 
to-day call botany. Probably it was only a comparison of our native 
plants with the species of southern Europe figured in the commen- 
taries of Dioscorides and others, and aimed merely at imparting to 
the young men under training for the ministry some notion of sim- 
ple remedial agents and their uses in disease. The commentaries 
and the ancient herbals were to the last degree untrustworthy as 
guides, either to botanical knowledge or medical practice. But it 
could not have been much more difficult for the first corps of 
teachers to adapt the descriptions given in the herbals and engrav- 
ings of the plants of the Mediterranean to the species of New Eng- 
land, than to those of Old England. Manasseh Cutler was therefore 
probably correct in his statement made in 1785, — 

" The almost total neglect of botanical inquiries in this part of the 
country may be imputed in part to this, that Botany has never been 
taught in any of our colleges.'* l 

It was medicine instead of botany which was taught in the earliest 
days of Harvard College, and the study of the nature of plants 
must have been full of absurdities as well as crudities. The 
teachers in those days did not stick at trifles. It was the age when 
Gerard's Herbal, the best book at hand, described a certain tree as 
bearing barnacles, which falling into the water became thereupon 
geese. 2 

Works on natural history were full of marvels, and everything 
unknown carried possibilities of the greatest value. Exaggerated 
accounts of the wonder-working powers of roots, barks, and leaves 
from the lands of Central and South America led many who came 
to our coast to expect similar discoveries. Therefore they were 
not only ignorant, but filled with preconceived ideas; and, with 
total lack of discrimination, they had little difficulty in making some 
of our northern plants agree with the species of lower latitudes. 
Such were the available sources of information, and such the 
manner of employing them. 

1 Account of Indigenous Vegetables Botanically Arranged, p. 397. 

2 Gerard's Herbal (Johnson's edition), p. 1588. 


As matter of fact, there was no attempt on this continent to 
give any systematic account of our botanical species until, in 1672, 
John Josselyn published his famous New England's Rarities Dis- 
covered, — a work which has received at the hands of one of our 
most careful botanists, the late Professor Edward Tuckerman, 
critical editing of the highest order. Our task lies, in point of 
time, considerably back of the latter part of the seventeenth cen- 
tury, and we are to deal with the rough notes of adventurers to 
whom New England was a land of hopes and trials but not of scien- 
tific study. Some of the directions to the ship's companies embark- 
ing on their voyages are, to be sure, considering the times, worthy 
forerunners of the instructions given by the English and other ad- 
miralties to-day ; but, so far as systematic results go, these instruc- 
tions did not bear much if any mature fruit. We are to see tilings 
through the eyes of sailors and settlers. 

I. What impressions were produced by our vegetation on the 
early comers ? In general, they appear to have been struck by the 
peculiar character of our forests and by the large spaces available 
for immediate cultivation. Thus Brereton, in his account of Gos- 
nold's voyage in 1602, describes graphically the Elizabeth Islands 
in Buzzard's Bay, saying much about the plants found there, and 
then writes as follows : — 

' ' But not to cloy you with particular rehearsal of such things as God 
and nature hath bestowed on these places, in comparison whereof the 
most fertile part of England is (of itself) but barren : we went in our 
light horseman from this island to the main, right against this island 
some two leagues off, where coming ashore, we stood awhile like men 
ravished at the beauty and delicacy of this sweet soil ; for besides divers 
clear lakes of fresh water (whereof we saw no end), meadows very large 
and full of green grass ; even the most woody places (I speak only of 
such as I saw,) do grow so distinct and apart, one tree from another, 
upon green grassy ground, somewhat higher than the plains, as if nature 
would show herself above her power, artificial." * 

Of the same part of our coast, another of Gosnold's people, 
Gabriel Archer, wrote : — 

" This main is the goodliest continent that ever we saw, promising 
more by far than we any way did expect : for it is replenished with fair 

1 3 Massachusetts Historical Collections, viii. 89. 


fields, and in them fragrant flowers, also meadows, and hedged in with 
stately groves," etc. 1 

The following bears date of 1622 : — 

" The country, in respect of the lying of it, is both champaign and hilly, 
like many places in England. In some places it is very rocky both 
above ground and in it : and though the country be wild and overgrown 
with woods, yet the trees stand not [so] thick but a man may well ride a 
horse amongst them." 2 

This primitive condition of our coast forests is so unlike what we 
see at the present time, when our trees are stunted and have under- 
thickets, that it is worth while to inquire what is known about the 
aboriginal methods of forest treatment. This question is partly 
answered in William Wood's New England's Prospect, dated 1634 : 

" The next commodity the land affords, is good store of woods, and 
that not only such as may be needful for fuel, but likewise for the build- 
ing of ships and houses, and mills, and all manner of waterwork about 
which wood is needful. The timber of the country grows straight, and 
tall, some trees being twenty, some thirty foot high, before they spread 
forth their branches ; generally the trees be not very thick, tho' there be 
many that will serve for mill-posts, some being three foot and a half 
over. And whereas it is generally conceived, that the woods grow so 
thick, that there is no more clear ground than is hewed out by the labor 
of men ; it is nothing so : In many places, divers acres being clear, so that 
one may ride a hunting in most places of the land, if he will venture 
himself for being lost : There is no underwood, saving in swamps, 
and low grounds that are wet, in which the English get osiers, 
hasels, and such small wood as is for their use. Of these swamps, 
some be 10, some 20, and some 30 miles long, being preserved by the 
wetness of the soil wherein they grow; for it being the custom of the 
Indians to burn the woods in November, when the grass is withered, 
and leaves dried, it consumes all the underwood and rubbish, which 
otherwise would overgrow the country, making it impassable, and spoil 
their much affected hunting ; so that by this means in those places where 
the Indians inhabit, there is scarce a bush or bramble, or any cumber- 
some underwood to be seen in the more champain ground. Small wood 
growing in these places where the fire cannot come, is preserved. In 
some places where the Indians died of the plague some fourteen years 

1 3 Massachusetts Historical Collections, viii. 78. 
a Mourt's Kelation, 2 Massachusetts Historical Collections, ix. 51. 



.ago, it is much underwood, as in the midway betwixt Wessaguscus and 
Plimouth, because it hath not been burned ; certain rivers stopping the 
fire from coming to clear that place of the country, hath made it unuseful 
and troublesome to travel through, insomuch that it is called ' ragged 
plain,' because it tears and rents the cloaths of them that pass." 1 

Thomas Morton says that the Indians burned the woods twice a 
year. 2 

There were other conditions, however, such as those existing 
just east of the Penobscot, concerning which Capt. John Smith 
wrote in 1614, — 

"But all this coast to Pennobscot, and as farre as I could see east- 
ward of it, is nothing but such high craggy cliffy Rocks and stony isles, 
that I wondered such great trees could growe upon so hard founda- 
tions. It is a countrie rather to affright than to delight one. And 
how to describe a more plaine spectacle of desolation, or more barren I 
knowe not. Yet the Sea there is the strangest fish pond I ever saw, 
and those barren isles so furnished with good woods, springs, fruits, 
fish and fowle, that it makes me thinke, though thee Coast bee rockie 
and thus affrightable ; the Vallies, Plaines, and interior parts may 
well (notwithstanding) be very fertile." 3 

1 It is interesting to look with Captain Smith's eyes at Cape 
Cod, which, in his words, " is only a headland of high hills of sand 
overgrowne with shrubbie pines, hurts, and such trash." But these 
aside, we may conclude that the first comers found the forests more 
or less free from underbrush, with here and there ample clearings 
made by the Indians, and with broad meadows bordering the 
streams. Further, and what is of much more importance, the for- 
ests were more open than at the present time. If one goes to 
Plymouth in his spring search for trailing arbutus, he will notice 
the openness of the woods containing small-sized, pitch-pine trees. 
But he cannot help feeling that the pines seen by the early visitors 
were much larger forest-trees than these are, and must have pre- 
sented a totally different appearance, if they could have been kept 
free from troublesome underwoods by the annual fires started by 
the Indians. 

1 Wood's New England's Prospect (Prince Society's edition), pp. 16, 17. 

2 The New English Canaan (Prince Society's edition), book i. chap, xviii. 
p. 172. 

8 Description of New England, 3 Massachusetts Historical Collections, vi. 
117, 118. 


II. We come now to our second question. The utilization of 
the plants found by the early settlers is described in part in the 
lists which have come down to us, and these summaries may well 
be examined first ; but, as will be noticed, there is occasional repeti- 
tion, especially in regard to the forests. 

There are many short catalogues of the more conspicuous plants 
met with near the shore by the early explorers. Some of these 
lists are interesting, but they present many obscurities. For 
instance, Brereton says of Elizabeth Island, where the company 
made a home for some time in 1602, — 

1 ' The chief est trees of this island are beeches and cedars, the outward 
parts all overgrown with low bushy trees, three or four feet high, which 
bear some kind of fruits, as appeared by their blossoms ; strawberries 
red and white, as sweet and much bigger than ours in England ; rasp- 
berries, gooseberries, whortleberries, and such an incredible store of 
vines, as well in the woody part of the island, where they run upon 
every tree, as on the outward parts, that we could not go for treading 
upon them." * 

Again, giving an account which appears in another part of his 
chronicle, — 

"This island is full of high timbered oaks, their leaves thrice so 
broad as ours ; cedars straight and tall ; beech, elm, holly, walnut trees 
in abundance, the fruit as big as ours, as appeared by those we found 
under the trees, which had lain all the year ungathered ; hazle-nut trees, 
cherry trees, the leaf, bark, and bigness not differing from ours in Eng- 
land, but the stalk beareth the blossoms or fruit at the end thereof like 
a cluster of grapes, forty or fifty in a bunch ; sassafras trees, great 
plenty all the island over, a tree of high price and profit ; also, divers 
other fruit trees, some of them with strange barks of an orange color, 
in feeling soft and smooth like velvet." 2 

In a brief note appended to his account, he gives, besides those 
already mentioned, — 

" Cypress trees ; . . . cotton trees ; . . . tobacco, excellent sweet and 
strong ; . . . ground-nuts, good meat, and also medicinable ; . . . pease, 
growing naturally ; flax ; iris florentina, whereof apothecaries make sweet 
balls ; sorrel, and many other herbs wherewith they make salads." 8 

1 3 Massachusetts Historical Collections, viii. 87. 

2 Ibid. viii. 88, 89. « Ibid. viii. 93, 94. 


The following account is from the record of Waymouth's Voyage 
in 1605, north of Virginia and along the coast of Maine : — 

" All along the shore, and some space within, where the wood hinder- 
eth not, grow plentifully, raspberries, gooseberries, strawberries, roses, 
currants, wild vines, angelica. — Within the islands grow wood of sun- 
dry sorts, some very great, and all tall, as birch, beech, ash, maple, 
spruce, cherry tree, yew, oak very great and good, fir-tree out of which 
issueth turpentine in so marvellous plenty, and so sweet, as our chirur- 
geon and others affirmed they never saw so good in England. We 
pulled off much gum congealed on the outside of the bark, which smelled 
like frankincense. This would be a great benefit for making tar and 
pitch." * 

He adds : — 

U A Brief Note of what Profits we saw the Country yield in the small 
time of our stay there. — 

" Trees. Oak of an excellent grain, straight and great timber ; elm, 
beech ; birch, very tall and great, of whose bark they make their canoes. 
Witch-hazel, hazel, alder, cherry-tree, ash, maple, yew, spruce, aspen, fir. 
Many fruit trees which we knew not. 

" Herbs. Angelica, a most sovereign herb; an herb that spreadeth 
the ground and smelleth like sweet majoram, great plenty ; very good 
dyes which appear by their paintings, which they carry with them in 
bladders. " 2 

Rev. William Hubbard in his General History of New England 
(1620-1680) includes a short account of our vegetation : — 

" As for medicinal herbs, Gerard and Johnson, as well as Theo- 
phrastus of old, might have made herbals here as well as in any other 
particular country ; the same trees, plants and shrubs, roots, herbs and 
fruits being found either naturally growing here that are known to do in 
the northern countries of the like climate of Europe, and upon trial have 
been found as effectual in their operation, and do thrive as well when 
transplanted ; as the oak, walnut, ash, elm, maple, hornbeam, abundance 
of pine, spruce, &c. ; also a kind of white cedar in many swamps ; and 
such herbs as are common in England — elecampane, angelica, gentian, 
St. John's wort, agrimony, betony, and the like." 8 

1 3 Massachusetts Historical Collections, viii. 134. 

2 Ibid. viii. 157. 

8 2 Massachusetts Historical Collections, v. 24. 


Capt. John Smith, in his Description of New England (1614 or 
1616), says : — 

"The herbs and fruits are of many sorts and kinds, as alkermes, 
currants, or a fruit like currants, mulberries, vines, raspberries, goos- 
berries, plums, walnuts, chestnuts, small nuts, &c. pumpkins, gourds, 
strawberries, beans, peas, and maize ; a kind or two of flax, wherewith 
they make nets, lines and ropes, both small and great, very strong for 
their quantities." 

" Oak is the chief wood, of which there is great difference in regard 
of the soil where it groweth, fir, pine, walnut, chestnut, birch, ash, elm, 
cypress, cedar, mulberry, plum-tree, hazel, sassafras, and many other 
sorts." x 

Another account, bearing date 1629, goes more into detail : — 

" This country aboundeth naturally with store of roots of great 
varietie and good to eat. Our turnips, parsnips, and carrots are here 
both bigger and sweeter than is ordinary to be found in England. Here 
are store of pumpions, cowcombers, and other things of that nature 
which I know not. Also divers excellent pot-herbs grow abundantly 
among the grasse, as strawberrie leaves in all places of the countrey, and 
plentie of strawberries in their time, and pennyroyall, wintersaverie, 
sorrell, brookelime, liverwort, carvell, and watercresses, also leekes and 
onions, are ordinarie, and divers physicall herbs. Here are also 
aboundance of other sweet herbs delightful to the smell, whose names 
we know not, &c. and plentie of single damaske roses verie sweete ; 
and two kinds of herbes that bare two kinds of flowers very sweet, 
which, they say, are as good to make cordage or cloath as any hempe 
or flaxe we have." 

"Excellent vines are here up and downe in the woods. Our Gov- 
ernour hath already planted a vineyard with great hope of encrease." 

" Also, mulberries, plums, raspberries, corrance, chesnuts, filberds, 
walnuts, smalnuts, hurtleberies, and hawes of whitethorne neere as 
good as our cherries in England, they grow in plentie here." 

" For wood there is no better in the world I thinke, here being foure 
sorts of oke differing both in the leafe, timber, and colour, all excellent 
good. There is also good ash, elme, willow, birch, beech, saxafras, 
juniper, cipres, cedar, spruce, pines, and firre that will yeeld abundance 
of turpentine, pitch, tarre, masts, and other materials for building both 
of ships and houses. Also here are store of sumacke trees, they are 
good for dying and tanning of leather, likewise such trees yeeld a pre- 

1 3 Massachusetts Historical Collections, vi. 120. 


cious gem called wine benjamin, that they say is excellent for per- 
fumes. Also here be divers roots and berries wherewith the Indians 
dye excellent holding colours that no raine nor washing can alter. Also, 
wee have materials to make sope-ashes and salt-peter in aboundance." x 

If we go farther north, and examine the interesting statements 
relative to Jacques Cartier's explorations, we find such notes as 
this : — 

"The countrey is hotter than the eountrey of Spaine, and the fairest 
that can possibly be found, altogether smooth, and leuel. There is no 
place be it neuer so little, but it hath some trees (yea albeit it be 
sandie), or else is full of wilde come, that hath an eare like vnto Rie : 
the corne is like oates, and smal peason, as thicke as if they had bene 
sowen and plowed, white and red gooseberies, strawberies, blackberies, 
white and red Roses, with many other floures of very sweet and plea- 
sant smell. There be also many goodly medows full of grasse . . . : 
we named it The bay of heat [Bay Chaleurs]." 2 

Taking from these and some other lists a few of the economic 
plants more systematically, we may gather the following facts : — 

(1) Maize, in numerous colored varieties, was everywhere found 
under cultivation. Its modes of cultivation and harvesting have 
been fully treated of by Mr. Lucien Carr. In verifying his copi- 
ous citations, I have been especially impressed by two things, — 
the thorough preparation of cleared ground for the plants, and the 
use of some small fish in each hill as a fertilizer. Another very 
interesting fact clearly brought out by Mr. Carr is the general 
preservation of corn in caches, where it was kept for winter use and 
for times of scarcity. Maize was generally parched before it was 
made into cakes. 

(2) Beans, of a size and shape suggesting the flageolet, common 
in France, and unlike the Windsor or great bean of England. 

(3) Gourd plants of many sorts, especially pumpkins, were in 
wide use. There are occasional references to the abundance in 
which they were found in the cultivated fields of the Indians. 
These, and possibly the wild beach-pea, were the chief vegetable 
foods of our northern aborigines. 

i New England's Plantation (Higgeson), 1 Massachusetts Historical Collec- 
tions, i. 118, 110. 

2 Haklnvt's The Principal Navigations, Voyages, Traffiques, and Discoveries 
of the English Nation (Goldsmid's edition), xiii. 9:2. 


Tobacco, as an accessory food, must be mentioned. From the 
slight references to the sort of tobacco used, it would appear to 
have been the soft-leaved Nicotiana Tabacum, and not the harsher 
Nicotiana rustica. When Gosnold went on a journey of some days 
from his camp, the food left for those in charge of the camp gave 
out, and they were much frightened by impending famine. But, 
as Archer says, " we sustained ourselves with Alexander and sorrel 
pottage, ground-nuts and tobacco, which gave nature a reasonable 
content." The Alexander referred to was some umbelliferous 
plant, probably Ligusticum Scoticum, or Scotch Lovage, — a plant 
found also in the Old World, but often regarded by botanists as 
indigenous. The sorrel was Rumex acetosella, likewise from the 
Eastern Continent, but generally credited with having been natural- 
ized here. The two plants seem, however, to be on the same foot- 
ing, and both may owe their introduction to the landing of some 
earlier visitors. The pottage must have been poor enough to 
warrant the unlimited use of tobacco to give nature any degree of 
" reasonable content." The ground-nuts were the tubers on the 
roots of Apios tuberosa, usually smaller than hickory nuts, but some- 
times described by the writers as being larger than eggs. If by 
" eggs " were meant hen's eggs, the tubers were larger than they 
are now generally found to be. 

Attention must be called to the comparative ease with which the 
soldiers of Gosnold's garrison managed to find food in the plants 
around them. It is no trifling task to find vegetable food along our 
northern shores or in the woods. The earliest account of such an 
experience is that of the ship's company under Master Hore, consist- 
ing, we are told, of divers young lawyers and other gentlemen, one 
hundred and twenty in number, who arrived in Newfoundland to 
make their home upon this continent. They could not have been 
prepared by education or by their previous life to grapple with the 
difficulties which confronted them here when their stores gave out. 
They could not fish, and they used as food the fish-bones which they 
picked out of the osprey's nests. Doubtless they had been put to 
many a shift in London to get a dinner, but that was nothing to 
their last extremity, when they took to eating roots and bilberries, 
and, finally, one another. 

The latest account which has come under my notice of the 
struggle against starvation in our northern forests is the thrilling 


story of young Somerset's adventures in Northwestern British 
America. The party found absolutely nothing which would sus- 
tain life, much less give strength for their arduous endeavor. The 
only thing within reach was one which they did not try ; namely, 
the inner bark of the spruces and pines. The store of starch and 
mucilage in this part of our evergreens is sufficient to sustain life 
for a time at least, and it has been so used in Scandinavia in time 
of famine. But the travellers in the land of the Muskeg, or 
northern peat-swamps, did not know of this scanty resource. 1 

Roger Williams's note may be cited in connection with the use 
of barks. In his Key into the Languages of New England, he 
says of a certain tribe that they are tree-eaters, — 

11 a people so-called (living between three and foure hundred miles West 
into the land) from their eating only . . . trees. They are men-eaters ; 
they set no corne, but live on the bark of the chestnut and walnut and 
other fine trees. They dry and eat the bark with the fat of beasts and 
sometimes of men." 2 

The wild grapes along our shore demonstrate how great are 
diversities in tastes. To some persons our Vitis Labrusca and 
aestivalis have no redeeming qualities, while to others they are 
of pleasant flavor. When one sees a gang of laborers working on 
a New Hampshire highway indulging in the partially ripe berries 
of our summer grape, adding these as a delicious dessert to their 
noonday meal, it is possible to understand how Vinland came to be 
named, wherever it was, by sailors tired of the sea, or how Jacques 
Cartier from St. Malo, who knew what grapes were, called his 
island (now the island of Orleans) the Isle of Bacchus. 

Most of the grapes, however, which one finds along the shore are 
sour enough to set on edge the teeth of the most undiscriminating 

We have no information that the grapes were ever utilized by the 
settlers in the colonies for the manufacture of wine, but it seems 
unlikely that this ready source of wine for the Communion could 
have been overlooked. 

In Virginia, Delaware, and New Jersey other food plants were 
not uncommon, — one in particular, the large globular, under- 

1 Somerset's Land of the Muskeg (London, 1895), passim. 
' 2 Chap. ii. Rhode Island Historical Collections, i. 34. 


ground tuckahoe, being the most striking. It is likely that what 
is called Okeepenauk, and described as " roots of round shape, found 
in dry ground, which the inhabitants boil and eat," was the potato. 
But the discussion of Virginian and Southern plants does not 
properly come within our present range, although it might well do 
so, since the limits of northern Virginia were so indefinite to some 
of the early writers as to be included by them as a part of New 

Fibre Plants. — None of these can be identified with certainty, 
though it is possible that the flax referred to by some was a wild 
species of Linum. It has been impossible for me to make a good 
fibre from any of our species. The plant bearing wool or cotton 
in pods was some Asclepias, worthless for spinning. The bast of 
both species of Apocynum might have been used, and also the 
inner bark of linden and black-spruce trees may have served as 
the source of twine for canoes, — just as is the case nowadays with 
our northern tribes who use the latter. 

For dyeing and tanning, the barks of sumach and other astrin- 
gent plants were employed to good purpose. 

For the manufacture of oil, crushed walnuts — that is, hickory- 
nuts — were used ; and also acorns, if we may judge of the New 
England residents from those living a little farther south. 

Remedial Agents. — Sassafras, in high repute. 

Sarsaparilla, which from the descriptions may have been Smilax 
rotundifolia, and other thorny species. 

Snakeweed, which Governor Winthrop always carried in his 
pocket, was probably the root of Nahalus. 

III. Lastly, what were the changes effected by the coming of 
the early settlers? 

A comparison of the lists which we have just scanned with the 
more systematic catalogue given by Josselyn, fifty years later, shows 
that a large number of vegetable intruders speedily made their way 
hither, and have here remained as weeds and wayside vagrants. 
Some of them have held closely to this part of New England, as 
Professor Gray has shown in his enumeration of the introduced 
plants, printed in Dr. Winsor's Memorial History of Boston. 
Others have gone forward into the lands occupied by advancing emi- 
grants, and are now domiciled in the far West. Such comparison, 



although botanically interesting, is too technical for the present 
communication, and is therefore relegated to another publication. 

All the accounts of the early New England plants which I have 
been able to examine are replete with material for study. The 
notices by Hariot and Strachey, the story of the Popham Colony, 
the records by Captain John Smith, who named New England and 
our Charles River, the history of Champlain's voyage, the Jesuit 
" Relations," and Roger Williams's " Key " are all inviting from 
this point of view. 

It will be seen from this rapid survey of a part of the statements 
regarding the plants first noted on our shores, that the subject is 
not wholly uninviting to naturalists. I shall be glad if the cursory 
account now given may lead our historians, on the one hand, to fill 
out this imperfect sketch, and on the other hand may lead some of 
our local botanists to aid in a more satisfactory identification of 
the constituents of our primeval vegetation. 

At the close of Dr. Goodale's paper there was a discussion 
concerning the names under which certain plants and trees 
might be identified in the early accounts; the habitat of 
certain flowers, and the probable reasons why certain trees 
and plants which must have been seen by the explorers 
of New England, and which were entitled to some sort of 
recognition by such close observers, were not mentioned in 
their accounts of the country. In this discussion. Dr. Gould, 
Mr. Henry Williams, Mr. Samuel Johnson, and Mr. 
Andrew McFarland Davis participated. 

Mr. Andrew McFarland Dayis read the following cer- 
tificate of Governor Shirley's Protestantism which is to be 
found in the Records of the Superior Court of Judicature : 1 

'•'Memorandum, This day being the first of April 1746, His Excellency 
William Shirley Esq!* Collonel of a Regiment, to be forthwith raised for 
uovr Shirley's the Defence of Cape Breton, came into Court between the 
Qualification. Hours of nine & twelve of the clock in the forenoon and 
produced a certificate of his having receiv'd the Sacrament of the Lords 
Supper according to the Usage of the Church of England, immediatlj 

1 1740-1745, xv. 206,267. 


after Divine Service & Sermon, on the thirtieth Day of March last, 
signed by the Rev d Mr Roger Price, Minister & Mr George Cradock 
Church Warden, and made proof of the truth thereof by the oaths of 
two credible Witnesses namely Mr John Gibbons & Mr Silvester Gardner ; 
pursuant to the Act of Parliament in that case made & provided ; 

The said Governour Shirley also at the same time in open Court, took 
the oaths appointed instead of the oaths of Allegiance & Supremacy, 
and likewise made, repeated & subscribed the declaration appointed 
by Law." 

Mr. Davis then said : — 

It will be remembered that after the Louisburg campaign Shirley 
was rewarded by an appointment as colonel in the British Army. 
Under the Test Act, the qualifications set forth in the above entry in 
the records of the Superior Court of Judicature were required of 
all officers under the government, civil as well as military. It 
would seem, therefore, that a Royal Governor of a province 
might have dispensed with the prerequisite of furnishing evidence 
that he had received the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper according 
to the usuage of the Church of England, in order that he might be 
deemed qualified for a commission as colonel in the Army. This 
entry would indicate, however, that such was not the case. 



A Stated Meeting of the Society was held in the Hall 
of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, on 
Wednesday, 19 February, 1896, at three o'clock in the 
afternoon, the President in the chair. 

After the Minutes of the last Meeting had been read and 
approved, Dr. Gould spoke as follows : — 

We have met this afternoon under circumstances of exceptional 
bereavement, and it is my sad duty to announce the death of three 
of our members who, within the brief interval of a single month, 
have been removed from our small company of one hundred. 

At our meeting last month, the first tidings which met me on 
entering this Hall told of the decease of Mr. Brimmer, whose 
useful and benignant life had closed during the preceding evening. 
Not ten days later, on the 23d January, came the sudden death of 
Dr. Wigglesworth. On Tuesday of last week we were called to 
lament the loss of Dr. Slade, who during the last three years had 
rendered assiduous, faithful, and disinterested service to the Society 
as a member of its Council. In four short weeks these three good 
men have been taken from our community, to winch they were so 
helpful, — each in his own especial way, — and which so much 
loved and honored them. Their services and good deeds will be 
commemorated later, in the most fitting way within our power. 
Each of them had claims upon the recognition and gratitude of 
Massachusetts which could not be overlooked, even were nothing 
uttered here. Yet this Society finds a melancholy satisfaction in 
commemorating the services and character of its departed members, 
who conferred new honor upon their lineage, and upon the early 
New England stock from which they sprung. 

The many distinguished positions which Martin Brimmer has 
occupied in this community, his many public-spirited acts, and the 
many directions in which his personal influence for good was con- 
tinually felt, made him especially well known to the citizens of 


Boston, notwithstanding the unassuming and modest traits which 
notably marked his character, and which his biographers cannot 
fail to record as among its peculiar charms. 

Dr. Edward Wigglesworth, seventh of the name in as many 
successive generations, was descended from Edward Wigglesworth, 
who came to Massachusetts in 1638 at the age of thirty-four, bringing 
with him his son Michael, seven years old, who became the noted 
author of the " Day of Doom." From this last-named sprung a family 
which was conspicuous from the beginning among the scholars of 
New England. In 1652 he was a Fellow of Harvard College, as 
were also his son and grandson, each of whom filled the chair of 
Hollis Professor of Divinity. These and the later ancestors of our 
colleague, bearing the name, were graduates of Harvard, where he 
himself graduated in 1861. 

The Civil War having then broken out, he enlisted at once as a 
private soldier in the Forty-fifth Massachusetts Regiment. At the 
expiration of the term of his enlistment he served on the Sanitary 
Commission, and later still in an army hospital as surgeon of 

After long study of his profession at Paris and Vienna, he 
devoted himself principally to the study of Dermatology, in which 
he rose to high professional eminence, and became one of the 
leading authorities. In the want of proper facilities for the care of 
patients, he established and conducted at his own expense an 
institution which he maintained until he had the satisfaction of 
seeing it incorporated into the City Hospital. He was liberal and 
generous to an exceptional extent, a constant friend and benefactor 
of the poor and the suffering, and an unselfish practical supporter 
of all movements in behalf of the true progress of the community, 
which came to his knowledge. Many will now miss the thoughtful 
care of an unknown friend. 

Dr. Daniel Denison Slade was a descendant of the sturdy soldier 
whose -name he bore, and whose part was so conspicuous in the 
first half-century of our New England history. The wife of Major- 
General Denison was a daughter of Gov. Thomas Dudley ; their 
daughter Elizabeth was wife of President John Rogers, of Harvard 
College, and from this union came our colleague. Dr. Slade 


graduated in the Class of 1844, and studied medicine for several 
years in Paris. After some years of professional practice in Boston, 
he accepted a professorship of Zoology in Harvard University. 
After filling this office for eleven years, he exchanged it for the 
position of Lecturer on Osteology, where he continued for nearly 
eleven years more and until his death. For some time his health had 
been seriously impaired ; but he bore disease and suffering patiently 
and bravely, and when death came it was only after three days of 
acute illness. 

Apart from his professional and scientific pursuits, Dr. Slade 
was strongly interested in antiquarian studies, especially in those 
relating to our early New England history. He was quiet and 
modest, and mingled comparatively little with general society; 
but his gentle, kindly nature was always manifest. Nearly sixty 
years of intimate acquaintance with him, at school, in college, and 
in later years, enable me to bear witness to the amiability, loyalty, 
and sincerity of his character. His friends were warmly attached 
to him, and it would be long before one could find a more lovable 

The Hon. George S. Hale followed with a brief but feel- 
ing tribute to the memory of his friend Mr. Brimmer. He 
alluded to the symmetry and even development of Mr. Brim- 
mer's character, to the dignity of his bearing, the courtesy of 
his manners, and the purity of his motives. The world was 
made better by the life of such a man. 

Mr. Hale also paid a warm tribute to his friend and class- 
mate Dr. Slade. 

Mr. William W. Goodwin spoke briefly of Mr. Brim- 
mer's relation to the Old Colony. His grandmother on his 
father's side was Sarah Watson, daughter of Colonel George 
Watson, of Plymouth, and Eliza Oliver, daughter of Judge 
Peter Oliver, of Middleborough. She married Martin Brim- 
mer, of Roxbury. Colonel Watson was born in 1718, and 
died in 1800. He was one of the most eminent citizens of 
Plymouth, and was universally respected. He was a devoted 


Loyalist, at least before the open outbreak of war in 1775; 
and in 1774 he accepted the office of Mandamus Councillor 
under the Crown. Bancroft thus describes a scene in the 
Plymouth meeting-house : — 

"The people of Plymouth were grieved that George Watson, 
their respected townsman, was willing to act under his [the 
King's] appointment. . On the first Lord's day after his purpose 
was known, as soon as he took his seat in meeting, his neighbors 
and friends put on their hats before the congregation and walked 
out of the house. The extreme public indignity was more than 
he could bear. As they passed his pew, he hid his face by bending 
his head over his cane, and determined to resign." 1 

Another daughter of Colonel Watson, Elizabeth, was a 
woman of great beauty ; she married Thomas Russell, a 
distinguished merchant of Boston, and afterwards Sir Gren- 
ville Temple. Another daughter, Mary, married Elisha 
Hutchinson, son of Governor Thomas Hutchinson. Colonel 
Watson and his second wife (the one above mentioned) 
had their portraits painted by Copley ; and these pictures 
were in Mr. Brimmer's possession. Mr. Brimmer was thus, 
through his grandmother, descended from George Watson, 
the earliest settler in Plymouth of the name of Watson, 
who came there before 1633. John, a grandson of George, 
and the father of Colonel Watson, was reputed to be the 
most wealthy man in the Old Colony. 

Martin Brimmer, the grandfather of our associate, was 
active in developing the manufacturing interests of Ply- 
mouth, and was interested in the iron-works on the 
Town Brook. He made in Plymouth the first illuminat- 
ing coal-gas used in this country. He was also engaged in 
business in Freetown. His son, George Watson Brimmer, 
designed the church of the First Parish in Plymouth, 
which was built in 1831, and was burnt a few years ago, 

1 History of the United States (edition of 1858), vii. 105. 


The plan of this wooden church was nearly the same as 
that of the old stone Trinity Church in Summer Street, 
Boston, which was also designed by Mr. George Watson 

Mr. AbxePw C. Goodell, Jr., spoke as follows : — 

I trust I may he excused for calling the attention of the Society 
to the fact, which has not been commented upon either here or at 
the recent meeting of the Massachusetts Historical Society, that 
Mr. Brimmer's death closes the male line of descent from the 
original immigrant of the same name. Thus becomes extinct 
a family name distinguished in the annals of Boston for four 

The first Martin Brimmer, though not of the little band of 
Huguenots from Rochelle who, after the Revocation of the Edict of 
Nantes, found an asylum in the New World, was a member of the 
congregation that worshipped in School Street, under the minis- 
trations of the Rev. Andrew Le Mercier. In 1730 an Act 1 was 
passed for the naturalization of Le Mercier and other Huguenots 
of Boston, in the petition 2 for which Martin Brimmer's name was 
included, and was the last signed to it, — he describing himself 
as a German Protestant from Hanover. I have seen him else- 
where described as a Walloon. We have the authority of our 
associate Mr. Henry E. Woods for assigning the year 1723 as the 
approximate time of his immigration. 

Without detracting from the merits of our English ancestors, it 
may well be doubted if of the old families of Boston seven more 
famous names can be mentioned than seven which I have taken at 
random from the comparatively short list of persecuted Protestants 
from the continent of Europe to whom I have alluded. What 
would the history of Boston lose of its peculiar savor, and how 
barren of patriotic interest would it become, were it deprived of 
the names of Bowdoin, Faneuil, Revere, Sigourney, Johonnot, 
Chardon, and Brimmer ! Yet the death of our highly esteemed 
associate forces upon us the sad reflection that one of these his- 
toric Boston names is extinguished. 

1 Province Laws, ii. 586, 595. 
» 2 See pp. 241, 242, post. 


Mr. Henry E. Woods said : — 

Mb. President, — Apropos of what Mr. Goodell has said, it 
has been remarked that Mr. Brimmer was the fourth bearing the 
name Martin. As Registrar, I had occasion to look into his an- 
cestry at the time of his nomination to membership in our Society, 
and it is my impression that there were five Martin Brimmers, but 
without my notes I cannot positively say that they covered five 
generations. 1 Mr. Brimmer was eligible to membership through 
the Sigourney family, the first Martin Brimmer having married a 
daughter of Andrew Sigourney, whose parents came to Boston a 
few years prior to 1692, the date of ancestral residence required 
by our By-laws. 

Mr. Edward Wheelwright paid this tribute to the 
memory of Dr. Slade : — 

By the death of Daniel Denison Slade The Colonial Society of 
Massachusetts has lost a worthy and useful member. One of the 
Founders of the Society, he was until recently a member of the 
Council. His natural inclination toward historical research was 
doubtless fostered, soon after his graduation from Harvard, by his 
employment as assistant to the historian Jared Sparks. He had 
already had experience as an original chronicler in keeping a 
diary, with unflagging perseverance, during the whole of his 
college life. No day during those four years was allowed by him 
to go by without a line. He would sometimes bring a volume 
of this record to the meetings of his Class in after years, and 
read passages from it both interesting and entertaining, enlivened 
as its pages were by the writer's peculiar and often unconscious 

The members of this Society do not need to be reminded of the 
interesting papers he has read to them. He read others before 
the Bostonian Society, and published still others in various maga- 
zines and periodicals, taking care to have them worthily illus- 
trated. He inherited valuable historical papers and memoranda, 
and delighted to share with others the information to be derived 

1 There were but four generations of Martin Brimmers, —two having been 
in one generation, one having died in childhood. 



from them. Only a week before his death he sent me a package 
of these papers, which he thought might be useful to me in some 
researches I was making. Nor were his literary labors confined 
to historical subjects. In the early years of his practice as a physi- 
cian he frequently wrote for medical journals, and was the recipi- 
ent of several prizes for essays on medical subjects ; while in after 
years he often wrote and published articles upon topics connected 
with natural history, agriculture, and horticulture. The latest of 
his writings on the latter subject was a small volume entitled 
The Evolution of Horticulture in New England, published in the 
closing month of the last year. Another publication, several years 
earlier in date, was the record of an excursion on horseback in 
Western Massachusetts, in company with several of his daughters. 
Most of this work was done, moreover, amidst the duties of a pro- 
fessorship in Harvard College, in the intervals of more than one 
severe illness, and while for many years in a condition of health 
so delicate that it is a marvel to his friends and medical advisers 
that he lived, as he did, to a ripe old age. 

Dr. Slade held an honored place in the profession of his choice, 
and was a pioneer in the effort to raise the standard of education 
and practice in veterinary surgery, having made a special study of 
the subject at the celebrated school of Alfort, in France. He was 
highly esteemed by his fellow physicians, and found among them 
some of his dearest and most attached friends. Dr. Richard M. 
Hodges, whose death was almost simultaneous with his own, is 
reported to have said in almost his last words, " Give my love to 
Slade ; " while Slade, unaware of his friend's condition, but con- 
scious that his own end was near, was almost at the same moment 
urging that Dr. Hodges should be sent for. Dr. Francis, of Brook- 
line, his classmate as well as his intimate friend and trusted ad- 
viser, attended him in his last illness. 

Community of tastes, and especially a common love of Nature 
in her wilder aspects, made Dr. Slade a valued friend to his class- 
mate Francis Parkman, and the historian's chosen companion in 
several of his explorations of the wildernesses of Maine and New 
Hampshire. In his later years Parkman delighted to talk over 
with Slade the incidents of their early travels ; and in the drives 
which, when debarred from walking, he was accustomed to take in 
the neighborhood of their respective residences, in answer to the 


question "Where shall we go?" almost invariably answered, "Let 
us stop at Slade's." Dr. Slade's love of Nature and his fondness for 
the simplicity of rural life led him to purchase "an abandoned 
farm" near Lake Winnipiseogee, where he delighted to pass a 
portion of the summer with his family, who fully shared his tastes. 
Of this farm he wrote a description in letters which were pub- 
lished in The Nation. This love of Nature extended to all 
created things, and made his position as Assistant in Osteology 
in the Agassiz Museum very congenial to him. The loving care 
with which he handled and arranged his specimens was delightful 
to witness. 

Personally I have lost in Slade a very dear friend, one to whom, 
in the performance of certain duties that have been laid upon me, 
I have been accustomed to look for sympathy, and have never 
looked in vain. I first knew him when we entered Harvard Col- 
lege together, in the Class of 1844. During the Freshman year 
we boarded together at the same table, and roomed in adjoining 
houses in the Appian Way. I met him again in Paris when he 
was a medical student there. After he went to reside at Chest- 
nut Hill I saw him less frequently than before, but was always 
sure of finding him at the annual meeting of our Class at Com- 
mencement. Never was he absent except when seriously ill. In 
the fast narrowing circle of his early associates he will be greatly 

Dr. Slade was a delightful companion. In his own inimitable 
way he was not only witty himself, but the cause of wit in others. 
Beneath an apparently impassive and somewhat sluggish exterior 
there lay, not always concealed, a warm and generous heart, a 
noble and chivalric spirit. His college associates were wiser than 
they knew when they gave him the title of " The Good Count." 
He was in truth, though after a simple and rustic fashion, one 
of Nature's noblemen. There was in him a charming union of 
naivete* and shrewdness, of frankness and reticence, of ambition 
and modesty, and with all and above all a steadfast loyalty to 
truth, to ■ duty, and to friendship. 

The Hon. John Lowell then spoke at considerable length 
touching the relations which existed between Dr. Slade and 
himself as neighbors. He had listened to the tributes which 


had been paid by classmates and friends, and as he listened 
he had felt that among those present no person was better 
entitled to bear witness to the many winning features in the 
character of our late associate, no person was better pre- 
pared to understand the justice of the eulogiums which had 
been pronounced upon his life and his work, than himself. 
Years of friendly intercourse as neighbors had ripened the 
friendship which existed between them ; not as neighbors 
in a city block where one may live for years with scarcely 
any knowledge of the family next door, but as neighbors in 
suburban territory where friendly intercourse was constant, 
and under circumstances which compelled him to appreciate 
more and more, from day to day, the rich gift of the personal 
friendship which was thus bestowed upon him. The loss of 
such a man must be deeply felt by those who had come 
closely in contact with him, and by the Societies of which 
he was a member. 

Dr. Charles Montrayille Green spoke of the life and 
character of Dr. Edward Wigglesworth : — 

It is not for me at this time, Mr. President, to attempt to present 
a just and worthy tribute to the life and character of our late asso- 
ciate : that sad duty will be performed by him who will be chosen 
to prepare, with deliberation, the Memoir for our Transactions. I 
wish rather to give expression to my sense of the great loss which 
this Society and this community have sustained in Dr. Wiggles- 
worth's untimely death. I say untimely, because, although he had 
accomplished much in twenty-five years of active professional life, 
he was still an earnest worker in the advancement of medical 
science, and in the varied philanthropic pursuits to which he had 
long devoted himself. 

Graduating from Harvard College in 1861, and from its Medical 
School in 1865, Dr. Wigglesworth spent five years in Europe, 
chiefly in Vienna, Paris, and London, fitting himself for his chosen 
specialty, Dermatologj^. At this time specialism in all branches 
of medical science was in its infancy in this country ; and on his 


return to Boston Dr. Wiggles worth devoted himself with energy 
and enthusiasm to his chosen field, becoming one of the pioneers 
in his department of practice. He opened a free clinic for diseases 
of the skin, and maintained it at his own expense until special 
departments in Dermatology were established in connection with 
the larger medical charities of this city. Subsequently he was 
appointed to the Department for Diseases of the Skin at the Boston 
City Hospital, and for many years has been its head. At the time 
of his death he had just completed his stated period of service for 
the year. For several years he was an instructor in Dermatology 
at the Harvard Medical School, and to this institution he long 
ago gave his valuable collection of models.. In his earlier years 
Dr. Wigglesworth was a frequent contributor to periodical medical 
literature, and was an active worker in the various medical soci- 
eties. He gave much time and effort to the establishment of the 
Boston Medical Library Association, and served until his death on 
its executive committee. He did good service as a member of the 
committee which raised the large sum of money required to provide 
the present seat of the Harvard Medical School. Indeed, it may 
be said, in the words of one of his contemporaries, "that he was 
always ready to encourage by word and deed, by suggestion, 
advice, and gift of money, all worthy objects demanding the active 
interest of the public-spirited physician ; and his assistance was 
usually sought both in the inception and in the promotion of such 

In his private life Edward Wigglesworth was upright, loyal to 
his high ideals, tender, chivalrous. Generous to a fault, yet was 
his giving unostentatious. Of warm-hearted nature, and brilliant 
intellect, he was a delightful companion. He will be remembered 
as an accomplished physician, a public-spirited citizen, and a gen- 
erous and lovable friend. 

Mr. Abner C. Goodell, Jr., gave the following account 
of the Third Volume of the Massachusetts Colony Records, 
about which there has been a diversity of opinion among 
historical students and scholars : — 

From the time of the division of the General Court, in 1644, 
into two separate branches, the House of Deputies conformed more 


and more to the pattern of the House of Commons. They elected 
a Speaker, and chose a Clerk, and began to keep a Journal distinct 
from the records of the Secretary. Unfortunately, all these Jour- 
nals save those from 1644 to the end of the first session of 1657 
are lost, — probably in the conflagration of 1711 or 1747, both of 
which wrought such havoc among the records in the Town House, 
or old Court House on King Street. The single printed volume 
of these Journals is erroneously included with the printed Records 
of the Governor and Company, and introduced by some incompre- 
hensible but certainly mistaken explanation of its want of harmony 
with the other records, which are the legislative records of the 
upper branch, and were kept by the Secretary of the Colony. 
During the first General Court, under the new system, the Journal 
was kept with diurnal entries under appropriate headings. This 
practice was discontinued the next year. At first, against all 
votes and ordinances passed in concurrence, the minute was made 
in the Journal " by both;" and later, "per curiam" This prac- 
tice seems to have been wholly discontinued after the May session 
of 1651. 

In the October session of 1648 the manner of keeping records 
by the Secretary and the Clerk of the House was further regulated. 
All bills, laws, petitions, etc., passed in concurrence, and voted 
upon last by the Magistrates, were to be kept by the Governor 
until the end of the session ; and, in like manner, all such papers 
last acted upon by the House were to remain with the Speaker. 
At the close of the session the assembled Court, or a committee of 
both branches, in presence of the Clerk and Secretary, were to 
deliver them to the Secretary to be recorded. This recording was 
to be finished in one month, after which the Clerk was to be 
allowed another month in which to transcribe this record into his 
book of copies. The Secretary's set was to be the official record. 

Both sets of these books of record, which, by the same order, 
were to include, or to be accompanied with, other books contain- 
ing all previous legislation not already ordered to be printed, were 
probably consumed with the House Journals. The records of the 
Magistrates or Assistants, and many if not most of the files, how- 
ever, seem to have escaped the conflagration. These files were 
in two groups, — one composed, in part at least, of " such bills, 
orders, etc., which have only passed the Magistrates," and which 


were to be given into the custody of the Secretary to be kept on 
file ; and another of similar papers, " such as have only passed the 
Deputies," and which were to be delivered to the Clerk of the 
House, to be filed and kept by him, in like manner. 

The vote requiring that the orders, etc., enacted remain in the 
hands of the Secretary and Clerk of the House, respectively, until 
the end of the session was repealed in the first session of 1650, and 
the Clerk was ordered to send to the Secretaiy, from time to time, 
immediately after their passage, such bills, etc., as had been con- 
currently enacted, and voted upon last by the House. This sub- 
stantially became the settled practice of the Legislature down to 
the adoption of the Constitution. 

Mr. Johis" Noble said that he had recently discovered in 
the Suffolk Court Files a fragment 1 in the handwriting of 
Edward Rawson, which might prove to be interesting in 
connection with this matter. 

Mr. Andrew McFarland Davis then said : — 

I wish to submit for the consideration of the Society a curious 
blackmailing letter which was sent to Governor Shirley, in May, 
1749. The anonymous writer, under threats of burning Shirley's 
country-house and of the commission of other acts of destruction 
of a similar nature by the band of conspirators in whose name he 
professes to speak, seeks to extort money from the Governor. 
Unless a motive is to be found in the sentence in the letter in 
which the writer alleges that all of those in whose name he pre- 
tends to speak had served in Shirley's regiment, and that not half 
of them had been paid for their services, there would not seem to 
be any special reason why the Governor should have been selected 
as a victim by the blackmailers. The original letter is on file at 
the Suffolk Court House, and from the indorsement it would 
appear that James Williams was indicted as the writer of it, and 
pleaded not guilty. There are, however, no other papers con- 
nected with the proceeding, and I have not found any reference 
to a trial in the Records of the Court. 

The letter is as follows : — 

May it plese your Exelelcey Your not complying with ours of May 
y e 20th 1749 Soterday which we left in your yard nixt y e Bookbinders 

1 For the full text of this document see post, v. 11G-132. 


Shop which we beleve you have Seen which has mad sum disspute amoung 
us for Sum was for going and firing your fine cuntry house without eney 
more Delay but Sum of us thot mabe you had not found it and therefore 
we Send you these fue lines which we are Shore you will find and by 
these you may find ye other by enquire tharefore Shall oneley ashore 
your Exelencey Except all that is in the other leter is preformed Which 
is that you take five hundred pound New tenor and and Carry the Same to 
that tree that Stands on your Right hand agoing over ye Nack abought 
half way over and Sum Distance out of ye highway and thare hid y e same 
close under ye Root of y e tree and cover it over with Durt So that it 
may be had close and that we may git it when we plese and with out 
Danger for we Shall not be all thare at a time So that thare will be a 
Nough left to full fill all that we have promissed in our other leter ye 
Sum of which is that if you Do not take five hondred pound New tenor 
with out Eaney privet mark of whot Nater so Eaver or Eney of it none 
nor Supspected but all good and carri it and hide y e Same whare you 
are diricted above on tuesday night which will be may ye 30 day 1749 
then if you Dont then we will Shorley burn all yuore fine Countrey Seate 
and there on to be longing with out fail and other places which will be a 
disadvantege to you and cuntry to for we will not be Bobled No more 
by your Exelencey then we will by Esq 1- Wills for all your good Counsel 
to him and your proclimation for if it was teen times as much as it is we 
Should mind it no more then the Durst under our feet or the b burning 
his house and him in the fray which we will as Shourly go as he is now 
alive if he dos not on our nixt Sumons proform which Shall Not be long 
we sware by the liveng God if it is his will that we or eney of us live 
long anugh and he may be glad to have y e Sumons before the fier for 
ye slig he pot on our forst but if he slits y e next he Shall fare ye worst 
for no proclimations with eney Considirations Shall avale aney thing but 
the proformence of y e above for if your exelency Should Set a watch 
Round your house in the Cuntry or town of eney quantity of men Sum 
of us Shall be there for we have all sarved under your Exelencey 5 
Ridgment in one place or other and Sum have bin disbanded and Naver 
halfe of us half paid and we Shall be Ready foreaver Round your Elboe 
to watch your motions we all have bound under Selves under a Solom 
and furm oth to stand by etch other in life and in death foreaver & 

It appears from the language of this letter that it was not the 
first communication of this character which had been sent ; and we 
find, upon examining the records, that on the twenty-first of April, 

1 Suffolk Court Files, vol. cccciv. no. 65,227. 


1749, the Governor submitted the following message to the con- 
sideration of the General Court : — 

Gentlemen of the Council & House of Eepresentatives. One of 
the members of His Majesty's Council has laid before me a villainous 
>aper, importing a wicked conspiracy for robbing him of part of his 
jstate, by extorting a sum of money from him & threatening him with 
;he burning of his house, warehouses, and vessels, and the murdering of 
lis person in case of his refusal to comply with their demands. 
Gentlemen, this being the first instance of this kind of execrable vil- 
my attempted in this Province, it highly imports this Legislature to 
lake provision for preventing & punishing the same attempts for the 
'uture. Wherefore I desire you would immediately take the matter into 
msideration & do what you judge necessary before you rise. 1 

The Governor's message was referred to a joint Committee, 
and their report, which was prepared by Samuel Welles of the 
Council, was submitted the next day. The Committee recom- 
tended that a Proclamation should be issued offering a reward of 
'wo hundred pounds, bills of the last emission, to be given to 
tny person who should inform or discover one or more concerned 
in this wicked conspiracy, so that he or they might be convicted. 
If the informer should prove to have been an accomplice, he 
was to be forgiven. The Governor was recommended to insert 
in his Proclamation the sum and substance of the anonymous 
letter, and verbatim extracts from the impious, insolent, and in- 
human language used therein, so that his Majesty's good subjects 
might be stirred up to join in bringing to exemplary punishment 
the profligate and abandoned wretches who were concerned in this 
wicked and impudent combination. It was also recommended that 
a Bill should be prepared for the prevention of such abominable 
and dangerous crimes in the future. 

The report was read and accepted, and a joint Committee was 
appointed to draft a Bill in accordance with the suggestions there- 
in contained. There is nothing in the Governor's message or in 
the report of the Committee to indicate what member of the Coun- 
cil was the recipient of the " villainous paper ; " but in the letter 
to Governor Shirley the writer indicates his determination not to 
be "bobled" anymore by his Excellency than by "Esq r Wills." 

1 Province Laws T iii. 449, 505. 


It may be inferred from the language used that " Wills " had at 
that time already received a communication from the same writer, 
to which he had not responded in such a way as to meet with the 
writer's approval. There can be but little doubt that the " Esq r 
Wills " of the letter must have been Samuel Welles, a member of 
the Council, 1 and the writer of the report which we have just been 

On the first of June, 1749, the Governor, in his message to the 
General Court, alluded to " an anonymous letter " sent to him to 
demand his laying a sum of money for the writer in a secret place. 
If the Governor should not comply with this request, the writer 
threatened to burn the Province House and Shirley's own house 
in the country. Tins letter, the Governor adds, " I shall order 
to be laid before you & desire you will without delay prepare 
a bill for suppressing this kind of wickednefs & punishing the 
authors as they deserve." 

The Court did not act promptly in the matter, and on the third 
of August the Governor laid before them a new instance " of the 
same kind of villany that was twice lately practised in this Province 
for extorting money by threatening gentlemen of substance with 
the destruction of their estates and persons in case of refusal to 
comply with the demands of these miscreants." This communica- 
tion incited the Legislature to action, and on the fourth of August 
a joint Committee was appointed to prepare a Bill for preventing 
and punishing such pernicious practices in the future. The action 
of this Committee is to be found in Chapter 7 of the laws of 
1749-50. 2 

Mr. Abner C. Goodell, Jr., presented a copy of a Procla- 
mation by Governor Hancock, and said : — 

Mr. President, — The interesting episode which our Corre- 
sponding Secretary has brought to light, and the formalities attend- 
ing the issuing of the Governor's Proclamation, may be contrasted 
with a similar proceeding on a like occasion after the adoption of 
the Constitution of the Commonwealth. 

1 Palfrey (History of New England, v. 567) gives his term of office 1747, 1748. 
He was, however, a member of the Council in 1749. 

2 Province Laws, iii. 479. 


In 1783 an anonymous letter was found at the door of one of the 
proprietors of Long Wharf, declaring a determination to set on 
fire the shops and warehouses extending along the wharf, unless 
the Proprietors forthwith signified in the newspapers their purpose 
to cause the removal from the wharf, or the closing of the business, 
of " all shop keepers, retailers, grog-sellers, etc." 

Upon this, Governor Hancock, in the recess of the General Court, 
of his own motion apparently, and without even the advice and con- 
sent of the Council, issued a Proclamation for the discovery and 
apprehension of the author or authors of the threatening letter^ 
" promising a reward of one hundred pounds to any person or per- 
sons who shall inform against, or discover, any one or more con- 
cerned in this wicked design." The Proclamation, which bears 
date 27 August, 1783, may be read in full in the forthcoming most 
interesting and valuable Supplement, by our associate Mr. Edwin 
M. Bacon, to the " Early Laws of Massachusetts " now being pub- 
lished by the State in a new edition under authority of Chap. 104 
of the Resolves of 1889. The object of Mr. Bacon's Supplement is 
to supply the lamentable omissions in the official series. This he 
has not only admirably accomplished, but in so doing has revealed 
historical data never availed of by any historian, and of the greatest 
interest and value. 

The text of the Proclamation is as follows : — 


By his Excellency John Hancock Esq r 

Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts 

A Proclamation. 

Wliereas an anonimous letter was found at the Doors of one of the 
Proprietors of the Long- Wliarf, in Boston, this morning, directed to 
Mr. Giles Alexander, wherein the writer declares "That it is determined 
to set the Long- Wharf on fire, except all shop-keepers, retailers, grog sellers 
&c cease to continue thereon as it is thought that it is a detriment to the 
shop-keepers and retailers of the town in general, to suffer any of that 
denomination to set up on Long- Wharf; and it is a pity that the wholesale 
merchants should suffer through their means, which must be the case ij 
they cease not. If you mean to cause them to move off, make it known in 


one of the newspapers this week. If you slight this warning you *U have 
no other." 

Which attrocious crime has been represented to me by the Proprietors 
of the said long-Wharf, praying for the interposition of the Government, 
in order to discover the author of it : And inasmuch as such an open 
and flagrant violation, both of the laws of God and man, hath a direct 
tendency to subvert all civil order and Government, and to render the 
lives and properties of the subjects of this Commonwealth, altogether 
precarious : 

I have therefore thought fit to issue this Proclamation, hereby requiring 
all officers, civil and military, and all other subjects within this Common- 
wealth, to use their utmost endeavours for descrying, seizing, and 
bringing to justice, the author or authors of the infamous letter afore- 
said, or any of his or their accomplices; — hereby also promising a 
reward of ONE HUNDRED POUNDS to be paid to any person or 
persons who shall inform against, or discover any one or more concerned 
in this wicked design, so that he or they may be convicted. 

Given under my hand, at Boston, the twenty-seventh day of August, in 
the year of our Lord, One thousand seven hundred and eighty-three, and 
in the eighth year of the independence of the United States of America. 

John Hancock. 
By his Excellency's command 
John Avery, Secretary. 




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AWEkoni Co., Be 

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A Stated Meeting of the Society was held in the Hall 
^~^- of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, on 
Wednesday, 18 March, 1896, at three o'clock in the after- 
noon, Dr. Benjamin Apthorp Gould in the chair. 

The Records of the February Meeting were read and 

Mr. John Noble read the following paper : — 


1748 and 1749. 

The story of the Knowles Riot, as it has been called, a somewhat 
famous event in our Provincial history which gave rise to the suit 
of Knowles v. Douglass, is more or less fully told in all historical 
accounts of Boston. 1 Many papers pertaining to this suit are 
among the Early Court Files of Suffolk, which fill out various de- 
tails of the Riot, and give a life and color and vividness that can 
come only from the testimony of eye-witnesses and actual partici- 
pators in the occurrences. So much of the story of the Riot as 
is necessary to an understanding of the suit may be briefly told. 

i Douglass's " Summary," Serial Number 15 ; pp. 235-238, text and note, of 
loose sheets, without date, among Suffolk Court Files (see p. 227, post) ; and 
i. 253 and note (edition of 1749, see p. 218, note 1, post) ; Snow's History of 
Boston, p. 238 etseq.; James Grahame's History of the United States, ii. 186- 
188; Bancroft's History of the United States (edition of 1840), iii. 465, 466; 
palfrey's History of New England, v. 88 et seq. ; Memorial History of Boston, 
chap. xvi. ; Narrative and Critical History of America, v. 148 et seq. ; and New 
England Historical and Genealogical Register for October, 1874, xxviii. 451- 
466. See also Boston Weekly Post-Boy, 23 November, 14 and 21 December 
1747, and 4 January, 1748; Boston Evening Post, 14 and 21 December, 1747; 
Boston Weekly News-Letter, 17 and 31 December, 1747, and 7 January, 1748 ; 
and Boston Gazette or Weekly Journal, 5 January, 1748. 


The arrival of Commodore Knowles in command of a part of the 
Louisburg fleet, in company with Sir William Pepperrell ; the re- 
fitting of his vessels disabled by the storms encountered on the 
way ; his riding at anchor in Nantasket Roads for the assembling 
of the fleet of merchantmen he was to convoy ; the numerous deser- 
tions of his sailors and the scarcity of enlistments ; his ships left 
short-handed ; his resort to that method of relief, common enough 
in the English service, but especially obnoxious and injurious to 
the Province ; the press-gang sent out in the early morning of the 
seventeenth of November, 1747 ; the seizure of seamen from the 
merchant vessels in the harbor and along the shore, sometimes 
of nearly their entire crews ; the taking of men off boats plying to 
and fro, unlucky enough to run in their way ; the capture of sail- 
ors, landsmen, craftsmen, apprentices, and laborers found about 
the wharves, in fact, of almost anybody along the water front of 
the town ; the storm stirred up in town by an impressment of 
such severity; the exultation in the victory of Louisburg, and 
the pride in all concerned therein, now forgotten in what they 
felt to be an encroachment on their rights and an assault on their 
liberties ; the mob that gathered about the Governor's house, 
that filled King Street, and flung their missiles into the Council 
Chamber windows; Shirley's futile attempt to address them and 
quell the outbreak ; their refusal of any terms but the retention as 
hostages of such officers as happened to be in town, and prompt 
and full redress of their grievances ; Shirley's letter to the Com- 
modore asking a release of the impressed men, or a suggestion 
of some terms of reconciliation ; the order of the Governor for a 
parade of the militia and the mounting of a guard, in response to 
which " not men enough turned out to form a line," or, as he him- 
self put it, " not a man appeared but the officers ; " the Governor's 
flight to Castle William ; Knowles's wrath at the turn things had 
taken, and at what seemed to him arrant rebellion ; his threats and 
preparations to bombard the town, — this summarizes the situation. 

The action of the authorities needs but brief mention. All is 
fully set forth in the records of the respective Bodies. 

The appointment by the General Court upon the seventeenth, the 
first day of the Riot, of a Committee to inquire into the matter and 
report thereon ; the Resolutions adopted by it upon the nineteenth, 


without waiting for that Committee to report, denouncing distur- 
bances that " tended to the destruction of all government and order," 
asserting their determination to " stand by " the Executive, but at 
the same time to have all grievances redressed ; the waiting of a 
Committee of the body with the resolutions upon Governor Shirley 
at the Castle ; the appointment of another Committee to consider 
" what further it might be proper for the Court to do ; " the Order 
of the Council for the release of all of Knowles's officers detained 
or on parole, and for their protection on their return to their vessels ; 
the application of "a Number of the Inhabitants " to the Selectmen 
of Boston, setting forth that " great Disorders for several Days past 
have been committed within this Town, and Insults and abuses 
offered to his Excellency the Governour and the Hon ble the Coun- 
cil, when sitting, by a number of Persons (chiefly Strangers) who 
this week assembled together and Committed great outrages, put- 
ting the Inhabitants of the Town in great Terror of their Lives ; " 
the meeting of the Selectmen " to Consider what is necessary for 
the Town to do to Evidence their Disavowing and Detestation 
of this unjustifiable affair ; " the call for a town-meeting ; the 
great town-meeting at five o'clock on the same day, with its dig- 
nified and decided action, clearing the town or " the generality of 
the Inhabitants " from the charge of " Abetting or Encouraging the 
late Tumultuous Riotous Assembly," resolving that it " consisted 
of Foreign Seamen, Servants Negroes and other Persons of mean 
and Vile Condition," declaring " the utmost Abhorrence of such 
Illegal Criminal Proceedings," and that they "will to their Utmost 
Discountenance and Suppress the same, and will at the same time 
encourage by all ways and means whatsoever any of their Inhabi- 
tants in making a Regular orderly Application to the proper Power 
for redressing all and every Grievance ; " the appointment of a 
Committee, " the Hon b Edward Hutchinson Esq r the Moderator of 
the Meeting and the Selectmen of the Town" "to wait upon his 
Excellency Governour Shirley the Hon ble his Majesty's Council and 
the Hon bIe House of Representatives, and in the Name of the Town 
present 'em with " a copy " of this Vote or Resolution of the Town ; " 
the waiting of this Committee upon the Governor at the Castle, 
who was " pleased very favourably to Receive the same and to Ex- 
press his Satisfaction therein ; " the various explanations and nego- 
tiations that took place ; the return of the Governor to his house 


under an escort with- fuller ranks than had " been known in any 
Regimental Muster for diverse Years past ; " the reading of the 
Governor's Proclamation at the head of the regiment ; the reward 
offered for the apprehension of the ringleaders of the mob; the 
assurance given that " all due care should be taken for maintaining 
their just rights and liberties, and redressing all & every griev- 
ance ; " and all matters at length satisfactorily adjusted, the storm 
was over. 

The temper of the town was quite ready for such an outbreak. 
Impressment, it is true, had the sanction of custom and the force 
of law, regulated as it was by Acts of Parliament from the time of 
Mary ; but Boston was always restive, and questioned its exercise 

The records of the town proceedings, articles in the newspapers 
of the day, and other discussions of the subject show the state of 
feeling, and that the practice of " Impresses " was regarded as one 
of the main " Discouragements and Hindrances of the growth of 
our Plantations." The Minutes of the Selectmen, 21 August, 1T45, 
contain a vote for a memorial to Spencer Phips, " the Lieut. Govern- 
our and Commander in Chief for the time being over our Province," 
and to the Council, praying for " immediate relief " against the 
doings of " a small Schooner Cruizing in our Bay " as a matter that 
" nearest effects the Libertys of the People and is a great Insult 
upon this Government." And again, on the twenty-second of 
November in the same year, there is another memorial praying 
for relief against the distress from scarcity of fuel occasioned by 
taking coasters for " service in the late expedition against Cape 
Breton," and the seizure of sailors "in a most arbitrary and illegal 
manner out of others of 'em that were not taken up." 

The Town Records of the tenth and eleventh of March, 1746, give 
a full account of the proceedings in town-meeting as to " the Griev- 
ances tins Town Labour under by reason of the Arbitrary and 
illegal proceedings of the Governour and Council in repeatedly 
Granting press Warrants, as also the male behaviour of some of 
their officers." A very spirited petition to the House of Represen- 
tatives was adopted. A tone of wounded pride and indignation 
runs through it, as it touches upon the distress occasioned lately by 
"no less than three Several Warrants," "executed in a manner 


before unknown to Englishmen," and upon the effects on " the once 
Cherish d now Depress d , once Flourishing now sinking Town of 
Boston ; " but it winds up with a sturdy assertion that such war- 
rants are " Breaches of Magna Charta, The Charter of the Province, 
and an Act of Parliament." There was a reconsideration two weeks 
later, and it was voted " That the said Petition and the Motion 
whereon it was grounded, contains Expressions disrespectful and 
reflecting upon his Excellency the Governour, and the Council, — 
and so far as it relates to the disrespectfulness the Town disavow 
the same." But though disavowing the disrespectfulness, the town 
seems to have receded from none of its positions. With all this 
strong feeling in the matter the town throughout looked only to 
lawful measures of redress, as signally appears by its course in the 
recent Riot. Matters were again quiet, but the town was still sen- 
sitive and jealous for its reputation as to order and loyalty. A new 
grievance arose. Two letters of Governor Shirley to the Secretary 
of the Province, written from the Castle in the first days of the 
Riot, before the town moved in the suppression of it, appeared in 
the Post Boy of the fourteenth of December. This, so long after the 
events, gave " uncommon concern " as having " a tendency to put 
the Town in a disadvantageous light with his Majesty." "A 
Number of the Inhabitants " at once applied to the Selectmen, as 
their Minutes of the sixteenth show, to call a town-meeting " to con- 
sult upon proper measures to Vindicate their Injur'd Characters 
and secure their Invaluable Priviledges ; " and a town-meeting was 
called for the eighteenth. Meantime a " further Account of the 
Riot, and the proceedings thereupon," appeared in the Weekly News- 
Letter of the seventeenth, in a shape tending " to clear up the Char- 
acter and Reputation of the Town." This, however, did not remove 
the grievance, as the one publication was presumed to be by Author- 
ity, while the other did not so appear. Town-meetings were held on 
the eighteenth, twenty-fourth, and twenty-ninth, and at length, after 
long debates, a petition to the Governor was got in satisfactory shape 
and unanimously adopted. The Governor's reply upon the same 
day assured them the publication of his two letters " did not in the 
least proceed from an inclination to prejudice the Carecter and Repu- 
tation of the Inhabitants, but was wholly occasioned by an insinu- 
ation in a late Pamphlet which appeared," he said, "to have a 
tendency to put part of my own Conduct upon this Occasion in a 



wrong light; and which I apprehended my Publication of those two 
Letters would Vindicate it from ; " likewise that the account in the 
News Letter was published by his direction, and that fact was suffi- 
cient to show that he " had no desire to Represent the Behaviour of 
the Inhabitants of the Town of Boston in a disadvantageous light," 
and to " remove all concern which might have been occasioned," 
and that the affair appeared to him " in a favourable light." This 
reply was immediately voted to be " fully satisfactory." 

It was just at this time that the alleged libellous publications 
appeared. The libel declared upon in the suit is contained in a 
passage in Dr. Douglass's famous Summary, 1 — a work perhaps too 
well known to need more than a casual reference here, — in that 
part of his treatise where he discusses some of the "Discourage- 
ments and Hindrances of the Growth of our Plantations." Among 
others he sets forth the disastrous effects of the practice of im- 
pressments, as preventing the increase of shipping and seamen, 
discouraging business enterprises and occasioning tumults and 
tragedies, and refers for a striking illustration to the recent disturb- 
ance in Boston, giving some account of the Riot, and indulging in 
some extremely abusive and .savage strictures upon Commodore 
Knowles. The passage occurs in the Serial Number of 24 Decem- 
ber, 1747. 2 An extract from this had already appeared in the Even- 

1 A Summary, Historical and Political, of the first Planting, progressive 
Improvements, and present State of the British Settlements in North- America, 
containing — I. Some general Account of ancient and modern Colonies, the 
granting and settling of the British Continent and West India Island Colonies, 
with some transient Remarks concerning the adjoining French and Spanish 
Settlements, and other Remarks of various Natures. II. The Hudson's Bay 
Company's Lodges, Fur and Skin Trade. III. Newfoundland Harbours and 
Cod-Fishery. IV. The Province of l'Accadie or Nova-Scotia ; with the Vicis- 
situdes of the Property and Jurisdiction thereof, and its present State. V. The 
several Grants of Sagadahock, Province of Main, Massachusetts-Bay, and New 
Plymouth, united by a new Charter in the present Province of Massachusetts 
Bay, commonly called New-England. By William Douglass, M. D. Vol. I. 
(Ne quid falsi dicere audeat, ne quid veri non audeat. — Cicero.) Boston, New 
England : Printed and Sold by Rogers and Fowle in Queen Street, md, cc, xlix. 

2 The Titlepage of this Number is as follows : A Summary Historical and 
Political of the first Planting progressive Improvements, and present State of 
the British Settlements in North America ; with Some transient Accounts 
of the Bordering French and Spanish Settlements. By W : D : M : D. N? 15. 
To be continued. Boston. Printed and Sold by Rogers and Fowle in Queen 
Street 1747 Where may be had all the former Numbers at 6? each New tenor. 


ing Post of the fourteenth, and a longer extract in its issue of the 
twenty-first. This last newspaper also contains upon the same page 
a concise and full summary of all the official proceedings at the time 
of the Riot, evidently occasioned by the matter in the Post Boy 
of the fourteenth already mentioned. 

A copy of these libellous publications is said to have been sent 
directly to Admiral Knowles at Jamaica by Governor Shirley, who 
added a suggestion that "the author was beneath his notice." 
Knowles, however, evidently thought otherwise, or cared little, 
and determined to proceed at once against Dr. Douglass. A power 
of attorney was executed by him on 7 April, 1748, the original of 
which, duly authenticated by the proper officials of Jamaica, is on 
the files of the Court. It empowers Charles Apthorp, Thomas 
Hancock, and Jeremiah Gridley, or either of them, to prosecute 
actions against all concerned as authors, composers, printers, or 
publishers of certain scandalous and defamatory libels in the 
Evening Post of the fourteenth and twenty-first of December and 
in the Summary; to carry them through the Provincial Courts, 
and if need be to appeal to his Majesty in his Privy Council. Suit 
was accordingly begun in the Inferior Court of Common Pleas, at 
the July Term, 1748. 

Both the plaintiff and the defendant are striking and picturesque 
personalities. Knowles traced his ancestry to a Crusader with 
Richard I. in the Third Crusade, with an irregularity in his own 
generation. Born in 1702, he had been in the British Service since 
he was fourteen, and was now a Rear- Admiral. He had already 
seen various and brilliant service, and distinguished himself as an 
officer, an engineer, a mechanician, an inventor, and to some extent 
as a man of science. His various commands and offices on this 
side of the water had brought him at different times into somewhat 
close relations with American affairs. Even as late as the spring of 
1747, as Governor of Cape Breton, he had been able to render the 
Province efficient help when a scarcity of coal was apprehended. 
Governor Shirley sent to the Selectmen of Boston an extract from 
his letter of 25 May, wherein he says : " I desire you will be pleased 
to acquaint the Town of Boston that I will order 'em to be supplyed 
with Coal without Staying till the Garrison is first provided, being 
glad of an Opportunity to oblige your Excellency, and serve the 
Province," — an offer which was gladly accepted, and a hearty 


acknowledgment sent by the Selectmen on the third of July, in 
which they say, " This Repeated Expression and Proof of your 
favourable Regards for this Town and Province require a re- 
peated acknowledgement," and " hearty thanks " are given for his 
" good Will and Affectionate Regards." After the desperate 
attack had been made by the French and Indians, under the com- 
mand of Joseph Boucher de Niverville, upon the frontier fort in 
Township Number Four, on the fourth of April, 1747, and a three 
days' siege successfully resisted, Knowles, in admiration of the 
bravery and skill shown in its defence, is said to have sent a sword 
to Captain Phinehas Stevens, who was in command of the post ; 
and the place, when afterward incorporated, is said to have been 
named Charlestown in Knowles's honor. 1 When the demands of 
the public service came in conflict with private rights and interests, 
in his judgment the latter must yield. In the matter of the im- 
pressments of November he seems to have acted with extreme 
rigor, but it is to be said that he claimed that his officers 
had exceeded their instructions; and further, that he was ex- 
asperated at the reports which reached him that deserters from 
his fleet were still skulking in Boston, who had not availed them- 
selves of the forgiveness asked and given, while others were 
on board the very merchantmen he was to protect. When 
the impress had been made, he was ready to right any wrongs 
until he found the mob had taken things into their own hands, 
and he was obliged to "await the event," as shown by the depo- 
sitions on file in the case. They also indicate an impetuous, 
imperious temperament, jealous of interference, together with a 
British officer's unquestioning respect for constituted authority, 
and a sensitiveness to any encroachment upon it. His only 
thought, apparently, was that now, the Governor having sought 
refuge in the Castle, it devolved on him, as the representative of 
the royal authority, to restore order and reinstate the ousted official 
by force, without waiting for the slower process of the laws and the 
civil power. Other depositions bear witness to the warm affection 
of his sailors for him. Shortly after the Riot he sailed for Jamaica, 
to assume the command of the fleet stationed there. He was ap- 

1 Address at the meeting of the Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association at 
Fort Dummer, 13 August, 1S96, by Rev. George Leon Walker, D. D. (Green- 
field (Mass.) Gazette and Courier (newspaper) of 15 August, 189G); McClin- 
tock's History of New Hampshire, p. 210. 


pointed Governor of Jamaica in 1752, as the successor of Trelawny, 
and in 1756 asked leave to resign. Governor Shirley seemed then 
likely to be his successor. His subsequent career was one of dis- 
tinction. After more than fifty years in the British service, and 
when he seems to have been on the retired list on half-pay, he 
entered, with the consent of his own government, the service of 
Russia, where he remained from 1770 to 1774. He died in 1777, 
having been " in thirteen general actions during the wars within 
his time, and had commanded in six." 

For his eminent services he was made a Baronet in 1765. To 
the typical characteristics of an English sailor he seems to have 
added a versatility rarely found in that profession. He has been 
called " a statesman of no mean capacity," and a comment of a Lord 
Chancellor has been quoted, that " his civil administration as Gov- 
ernor and Chancellor of Jamaica has never been surpassed ; " and 
of an Attorney-General, that " but for his naval profession he 
should have thought he had been bred to the Bar." 1 

Dr. William Douglass came from Scotland in 1716 at the age of 
about twenty-five years, and began practice in Boston two years 
later. He was born in Gifford, a town in the County of Hadding- 
ton, near Edinburgh, and was the second son of George Douglass, 
the factor of the Marquis of Tweeddale, and a portioner in Gifford. 
Educated in Leyden and Paris, he was for a time the only regularly 
graduated physician in Boston. He seems to have been a man of 
decided character, varied accomplishments, much learning, exten- 
sive reading, wide and various information, and good abilities. 
He was a leader of the opponents of Inoculation in the famous 
controversy of 1721, finding, perhaps, an additional interest and 
motive in the fight from the fact that the clergy were on the other 
side. But in the small-pox epidemic in 1752 he favored and used 
the practice. In "the Plague in the Throat" epidemic in 1735 
and 1736, which baffled medical skill and spread consternation, he 
wrote a practical history of the disease, which, republished ninety 
years later, was called "one of the best works extant upon the sub- 
ject," — an estimate which recent discoveries and advances in medi- 
cal science would somewhat lower to-day. It has also been said 

1 See Albert H. Hoyt's article on the Pepperrell Papers in the New England 
Historical and Genealogical Register for October, 1874, xxviii. 451-466 ; and 
Palfrey's History of New England, v. 88, 145. 


that " Medicine in Boston owed the reform of its Materia Medica 
largely to Dr. Douglass." He figured also in other fields, — as a 
botanist, an astronomer, and an almanac-maker. He was a ready 
and prolific writer for the newspapers of the day, and the author of 
some pungent pamphlets. His style, though harsh, clumsy, and n^t 
always grammatical, had much of aggressive force and point. His 
more ambitious work, the " Summary," appears in connection with 
the Libel. A noticeable feature of it is the soundness of his views 
on many abstract questions of public policy, finance, government, 
the conditions of the British dependencies in America, and economics 
in general. The strength of his prejudices, his love of a fight, and 
the slashing quality of his style not unfrequently color his state- 
ments of fact. He was a born controversialist. It has been so 
neatly said of him that "he was always positive and sometimes 
accurate," that it will bear quoting again. Possibly, however, his- 
toric accuracy may have here yielded somewhat to epigrammatic 
point. He was supposed to be one of the writers for the Courant, 
variously denominated "respectable characters," "free thinkers," 
and " the hell-fire club," according to the point of view. He was evi- 
dently a man of intense prejudices, extreme views, with the courage 
of his convictions, not afraid or ashamed of inconsistency, quarrel- 
some, impulsive, self-confident, full of energy and force. Honest, 
too, he was, and ready to acknowledge his mistakes ; always plant- 
ing himself on the side that seemed right to him at the moment, 
without regard to previous opinions or positions. He was a landed 
proprietor and benefactor in the town in Worcester County which 
perpetuates his name, and the holder of considerable real estate in 
Boston, which latter possession gave him a chance to be at issue 
with the assessors. One of his houses here was the famous Old 
Green Dragon Tavern Estate, in which he wrote his Summary, 
and where he died 21 October, 1752. 1 

The case, beginning in the Inferior Court of Common Pleas, 
went through all its stages to the Court of last resort in the 
Province, ably and strenuously fought upon either side by some of 

1 Memorial History of Boston, ii. chap. xv. and xvi. ; iv. chap. ix. and x. ; 
Drake's History and Antiquities of Boston, p. 623 ; ShurtlefTs Topographical 
and Historical Description of Boston, pp. 609, 610; Palfrey's History of New 
England, iv. 414 etseq. ; and New England Historical and Genealogical Register 
for 1877. xxxi. 118. 



the most eminent lawyers in the Province, whose fame has come 
down to us through a century and a half. The Court Records 
present the case as fully and succinctly as is possible. 

The record in the Court of Common Pleas is as follows : — 

Suffolk ss. Armo Regni Regis Georgii Secundi Magnae Britannise 
Franciae & Hibernise vicesimo secundo. 

At an inferior Court of common pleas begun & held at Boston within 
and for the County of Suffolk on the first Tuesday of July being the 
fifth day of the said month Anno Dom'- 1748. Charles Knowles Esq. 
now residing at the island of Jamaica Pit. vs William Douglass of 
Boston in the County of Suffolk Physician Def? in a plea of trespass 
on the case, for that whereas the said Charles is a true faithful & 
honest subject of our kingdom of Great Britain, has been so reputed 
from his nativity to this time, & gained a valuable character by his 
prudent behavior & faithful services in our fleet, & on account thereof 
been promoted to be a Commodore in the same ; & also for his loyalty 
courage & experience in military affairs been appointed Governor of 
our island of Cape Breton, & since appointed Rear Admiral of the 
white squadron in our fleet, & Commander in chief of our ships of 
war, & the other ships at the said island of Jamaica, in all which 
stations his behavior had in all points answered the trusts reposed in 
him, all which the said William well knew ; yet the said William 
maliciously contriving to hurt the sd. Charles's good name & bring 
him into disgrace as a person behaving ill in his posts aforesaid & 
altogether unworthy of the same, & to put him in danger of losing his 
aforesaid posts of Governor of the said island of Cape Breton, Rear 
Admiral of the white squadron of our fleet, & Commander in chief of 
our ships of war & the other ships at the island of Jamaica with the 
profits thereof, to his utter ruin, did on the twenty fourth day of Decem- 
ber last at Boston aforesaid compose write & publish in the sight & 
hearing of many of the good & faithful subjects a scandalous & infa- 
mous libel intitled, A Summary historical & political of the first planting, 
progressive improvements, & present state of the British settlements in 
North America ; with some transient accounts of the bordering French 
& Spanish settlements, & Printed & sold by Rogers & Fowle in said 
Boston ; wherein among other things the said William falsely & mali- 
ciously affirms & declares of the said Charles the following false & 
scandalous words, viz. "Nov!* 17th Anno 1747 Commodore Knowles" 
(meaning the said Charles Knowles) " made a general impress in a most 
illegal unprecedented manner ; seized or rather in the night time in sur- 


prise, by his press gangs stole away ship builders apprentices & whole 
crews of ships not only outward bound but actually cleared out, without 
leaving any of his own people on board to take care of the ships & mer- 
chants interest. This naturally occasioned a considerable tumult : The 
rioters seized the sea officers that the Commodore " (meaning the said 
Charles Knowles) " had imprudently left ashore, by way of reprisals, 
but used them well. The Commodore" (meaning the said Charles 
Knowles), " threaten'd & did actually make some advances with his 
fleet towards the town of Boston to bombard it or land his men there 
(doubtless if he had arrived to the point of putting this furious madness 
in execution, his officers would have confined him as a maniac) but this 
paroxysm abated, & he returned a few of the impressed men." Also 
these farther false & scandalous words, viz. " Mr Kn — les" (meaning 
the said Charles Knowles) " as a sea Commander perhaps may be noted 
in the future history of our colony for his unprecedented arrogance by 
insulting the governments & distressing of trade. He " (meaning the 
said Charles Knowles) "is of obscure parentage, in his youth served 
aboard the navy in the meanest stations, & from some unaccountable 
whim or humour of some of the officers (thus some ladies take a liking 
or fancy to a monkey, lapdog or parrot) at present in high station, & 
some smattering in the engineering business he is arrived to be a war- 
rant Commodore in America, where like a beggar on horseback he rides 
unmercifully. A succession of such Commodores would contribute to 
alienate the affections of the Colonys from their mother country. Such 
petty t} 7 rants in the Colonys answer no intention. His" (meaning the 
said Charles Knowles's) "courage is not genuine & true, but a sort of 
frenzy. Witness his ill conducted, therefore unsuccessful, expeditions 
against La Guira & Porto Cavallo in New Spain, anno 1743. This 
foible renders him naturally incapable of any chief command, but quali- 
fies him to act under direction pointing his courage right, as master of a 
fireship, or as a private Captain upon some desperate attempt or forlorn 
hope. Madmen will run into the greatest general dangers, but at the 
frown of their keeper or austere threatning of any single person are 
intimidated. Thus our Commodore dreads any private challenge, as 
appeared by vouchers which may be produced. His" (meaning the said 
Charles's) " present state is rash, inconstant, valetudinary friendship, 
hated by the common sailors, & not beloved by his best officers ; labo- 
riously indefatigable in running to & fro, & in expending of paper, true 
symptoms of madness. Mr. Kn — les " (meaning the said Charles 
Knowles) " is very apt to misplace his application. We have a plain 
instance of this last summer while he resided in command at Louisbourg. 
Instead of blocking up the mouth of Canada river to prevent supplies 


being sent to Canada, at that time much in want of stores, & preventing 
the french cod fishery in the northern harbors of Newfoundland, he 
busied himself in small concerns which properly belonged to some 
inferior officers, viz. cleaning the streets of Louisbourg, the business of 
scavengers : disciplining of tipling houses, the affair of orderly ser- 
geants ; inspecting & distressing our coasting vessels that carried live 
stock, liquors & other provisions for the comfort of the garrison ; this 
might have been delegated to the naval officers. I shall give a few 
instances of his" (meaning the said Charles Knowles's) "madness & 
bad conduct. 1. In Antigua he impressed all the men of Capt. Purcell's 
privateer, which had been hired by the island for the protection of their 
trade & made a property of the vessel. 2. His insulting the govern- 
ment & forts of Barbadoes & the custom house office there. 3. The 
La Guira & Porto Cavallo's unsuccessful affair, with the loss of many 
men & great damage of the King's ships. 4. Last summer, instead of 
cleaning his ships when at Boston (the properest & most convenient 
of all the Colonys for that use) he carried them to Annapolis in Nova 
Scotia ; but because the officers of the garrison did not do him the 
honors which he expected, pretending the tides were too slack he 
returned to Louisbourg. 5. This autumn 1747 he left the trade of the 
southern district of the British North America exposed to the enemies 
privateers (they took several of our vessels) by ordering the station 
ships of Carolina & Virginia to rendezvous at Boston to form a fleet of 
parade or vanity for the Commodore " (meaning the said Charles 
Knowles. Whereas in truth the said Charles Knowles was not guilty of 
any of the misdemeanors or misconduct composed written & published 
as aforesaid ; but by color of the said several false malicious and 
defamatory words so published as aforesaid, he is greatly hurt in his 
good name, fallen into great scandal & reproach, & is in danger of 
losing his aforesaid two last mentioned posts of Rear Admiral of the 
white squadron in our fleet, & Commander in chief of the ships of war 
& the other ships at the island of Jamaica, & the profits thereof 
accruing ; and to discover the falsehood & malice of this libel & words 
therein before recited, the said Charles hath been put to great pains & 
travel, & forced to expend several sums of mony ; all which is to the 
damage of the said Charles Knowles (as he saith) the sum of ten 
thousand pounds lawful money of Great Britain. The def- appeared 
by John Overing Esq. his attorny, & saving his pleas in abatement 
which were overruled by the Court, for issue farther said that he was 
not guilty in manner & form as the pi* complains against him, & there- 
upon submits himself to the Country ; upon which issue being joined, 
the case after a full hearing was committed to the Jury, who being 



sworn according to law to try the same, returned their verdict therein 
upon oath, that is to say, they find for the deff cost. Tis therefore con- 
sidered by the Court, that the said William Douglass shall recover 
against the said Charles Knowles cost of suit. The plf appealed from 
this Judgment unto the next Superior Court of Judicature to be holden 
for this County, & entered into recognizance with suretys as the law 
directs for prosecuting his appeal to effect. 

The case was then taken to the Superior Court of Judicature 
upon an Appeal by Knowles, and entered at the August Term, 
1748, and thence continued to the February Term, 1748-49. 

The record begins with the usual statement of the case, sets 
out the record in the Court of Common Pleas, the proceedings 
upon the Appeal, and concludes as follows : — 

"And now both parties appear'd and the Case after a full hearing 
was committed to the Jury who were sworn according to Law to try the 
same and return'd their Verdict therein upon Oath, that is to say, they 
find for the Appellant reversion of the former Judgment — seven hun- 
dred & fifty pounds sterling money of great Britain Damage & cost of 

" It is therefore Consider'd by the Court that the former Judgment be 
& hereby is reversed and that the said Charles Knowles shall recover 
against the said William Douglass the Sum of seven hundred & fifty 
pounds sterling money of great Britain Damage and cost of Courts." 1 
[N. B. The Appellee gave Bond to review this Action at next Term.] 

The alleged libel in the " Summary," contained partly in the 
text, but mainly in a footnote, is about one half the entire passage 
therein ; the remainder, a comparison of Knowles with Sir Peter 
Warren, a further account of the disturbance and what might have 
been its consequences, with some more strictures upon the Commo- 
dore, though rough and harsh, is less virulent and abusive. There is 
also in a later number of the work a somewhat full account of the 
Riot, and references to Commodore Knowles in connection with it, 
here and in several other passages. Though Dr. Douglass was 
generally understood to be the author, and "W.D., M.D.," ap- 
pears upon the titlepage, direct evidence appears in a deposition, 
used at the first trial in the Superior Court, made by two printers, 
which declares that — 

1 Records of the Superior Court of Judicature, 1747-50, xvii. 194. 


" the Sheets printed under the Title of a Summary &c have been de- 
livered them from Time to Time by William Douglass, of Boston, 
Physician, in Parcels, and particularly N° 15, with the things therein 
contained, as we Suppose, in his own Hand writing ; which N° 15 is 
hereto annexed, and that they have from Time to Time printed them 
from him as the Author." 

The work was then coming out in numbers, subsequently col- 
lected into a Volume I. in 1749, and a Volume II. considerably later. 
There were evidently more editions than one, or at any rate changes 
in the form. There are among the papers on the files two sets of 
a titlepage and the eight following pages, the same as in Volume I., 
1749, certified and made to serve as copies of some earlier issues 
by erasures and additions in ink, the introductory address of the 
" Author to the Reader" becoming that of the "Printers," with 
the necessary changes in language, and the titlepage changed 
variously and lacking the bold Latin motto from Cicero,— 

** Ne quid falsi dicere audeat, nequid veri non audeat." 

There are also the printed pages 235 to 238, corrected in ink to 
correspond with the Libel declared on, duly certified. When the 
collected numbers were issued in the form of Volume I. sometime in 
1749, and at all events before the final trial in the Superior Court, 
the obnoxious passage was entirely omitted, as appears from the 
Introductory Address to the Reader, both of the Author and that 
of the Printers. There is a copy of the 1749 edition in the library 
of the New England Historic Genealogical Society, and also in 
that of the Massachusetts Historical Society, where the paging on 
each side of the original libellous passage is the same as in the 
original issue ; but the libel is omitted and the space neatly filled 
in by some discussion of the late Act of Parliament of 1746, and 
some further consideration of the general subject of impressment 
and suggestions for the improvement of the naval service. There 
is also a copy in the latter library which bears the autograph of 
Benjamin Lynde, and the date of 1750, with the titlepage and the 
subsequent pages of the edition of 1749, which contains the whole 
of the original passage, text and footnote. Perhaps the explana- 
tion is that Judge Lynde had the original numbers bound up and 
prefixed the new titlepage, as apparently even at the time of the 
trial the original titlepage of 1747, judging from the copies used, 


had become scarce. Douglass not only suppressed the passage, — 
for what reason does not appear and can only be drawn by in- 
ference, the attributed motive varying with the estimate of the 
man, — but also gave, in the Address to the Header before referred 
to, an explanation of his purposes and motives in the original refer- 
ence to the matter and his strictures upon Commodore Knowles, 
and his reasons for the subsequent omission in the completed his- 
tory, the magnum opus of his life. This explanation is as follows : 

" The Writer with Candour acknowledges that in the Affair of Com- 
modore now Admiral Knowles's Impress in the Harbour of Boston, 
Nov. 1747, there was somewhat of passionate Warmth and Indiscretion, 
meerly in Affection to the port of Boston, and Country of New-England, 
his Altera Patria ; but not with Rancour or Malice, having no personal 
Acquaintance nor Dealings with Mr. Knowles ; therefore from common 
Fame, he (as Historians do) only narrates his peculiar Temper, his 
Severity in Discipline, and not so much Regard as some other Sea-Com- 
manders have for the mercantile Interest, by impressing their Men, 
when he thought the publick Service required it : His general Courage 
as a Sea-Officer was extolled ; The Insinuation concerning his personal 
Courage, has been construed amiss ; the refusing of passionate Challenges 
from private Masters of Merchant Ships, whose Men he had impressed, 
which perhaps might deprive the Nation of his Service, is no Slur. 

"The Writer declares that he had no other Intention, than that by 
setting the Affair in a strong Light he might perhaps contribute towards 
extending to the Continent Colonies, particularly to New England, a 
late Act of Parliament against impressing of Sailors in the Sugar West 
India Islands. Therefore as this Affair was temporary, of no Use, and 
may give Offence, we by his direction do suppress it in our present Pub- 
lication of this first Volume of the Summary. Admiral Knowles since 
he sail'd from Boston, has been gloriously happy in gallant successfull 
naval Expeditions, particularly in reducing the Fort of Port Louis of 
Hispaniola, and in beating a superior Spanish Squadron, off the Havan- 
nah ; he has been in a Course of Preferments ; and prosperous as to his 
private Fortune." 

It might be of some interest to take up the various points of the 
alleged Libel, its statements, its charges, its historical allusions, 
and the many matters therein contained, — for they open a some- 
what wide held for consideration, — but the limits of this paper do 
not allow it, and the account must be confined to a narrative of 
the legal controversy and the matters therewith connected. 


Douglass brought his Writ of Review, and Knowles, dissatis- 
fied with, the amount of damages recovered in the second trial, 
did likewise. Both of the original writs are on the files of the 
Court, the writ against Douglass attaching his real estate in 
Suffolk, enumerating among others the Old Green Dragon Tavern 
Estate. The two suits were tried together, and the record is as 
follows : — 

Province of the 
Massachusetts Bay 
Suffolk ss. — 

Anno Regni Regis Georgii secundi Magnse Britannise, Franciae et 
Hibernise, vicesimo tertio — 

At his Majesty's Superior Court of Judicature, Court of Assize and 
general goal Delivery, began & held at Boston, within & for the 
County of Suffolk on the third Tuesday of August, (being the 15 th day of 
s d Month), annoq. Dom 1 - 1749. 

By the honb le Paul Dudley, Esq r * Chief Justice 
Richard Saltonstall \ 
Stephen Sewall I Esquires 

Benjamin Lynde {Justices. 1 

John Cushino 


" William Douglass of Boston in the County of Suffolk, Physitian, 
Plaintif ag st Charles Knowles, Esq r now residing at his Majesty's Island 
of Jamaica, Defendant, in a plea of review of a plea of tresspass on the 
Case commenced by the said Charles Knowles against the said William 
Douglass at an inferiour Court of common pleas held &c &c — " 

[Then follows the record of the case in the Court of Common 

Pleas, and on the appeal in the Superiour Court of Judicature, 

with the judgment therein, and the record proceeds :] 

" which Judgment the said William Douglass saith is wrong & erroneous 

and that he is thereby damnified the Sum of eight hundred pounds 

Sterling ; 

" Wherefore for reversing thereof and for recovering Judgment against 
the said Charles Knowles for cost of Courts, the said William Douglass 
brings this Suit. 

" And the said Charles Knowles also brought forward his Writ of review 
of the said Action against the said William Douglass for recovering 
Judgment against him for the further Sum of nine thousand two hundred 
& fifty pounds lawful money of great Britain, to compleat the afores d 

1 Records of the Superior Court of Judicature, 1747-50, xvii. 267. 


Sum of ten thousand pounds, being the Damage laid in the original Writ 
and costs : — 

"And to the Suit brought by the said William Douglass against the said 
Charles Knowles as aforesaid, the said Charles Knowles by Robert 
Auchmuty Esq r his attorney defends and for Issue pleads the former 
Judgment as in nothing erroneous save that instead of being for the Sum 
of seven hundred & fifty pounds sterling Damages, it ought to have been 
for the sum of ten thousand pounds lawful mony of great Britain, and 
costs, and of this puts &c — 

"And to the Suit bro't by the said Charles Knowles against the said 
William Douglass, the said William Douglass by Richard Dana Esq r his 
Attorney comes & defends &c and saith that the aforesaid Judgment 
of this Court is not erroneous saving that instead of being for the plain- 
tif to recover the said seven hundred & fifty pounds, it ought to have 
been for the said William to recover his costs, and thereof puts &c. 

" Upon which pleas by the said parties respectively made as afores d 
issue was joined & the Case after a full hearing, with both Writs of 
review, was committed to the Jury who were sworn according to Law to 
try the same, and return'd their Verdicts therein upon Oath, that is to 
say, in the Suit brought by the said William Douglass against the said 
Charles Knowles, they find for the plaintif reversion of the former Judg- 
m* and cost of Courts, and in the Suit brought by the said Charles 
Knowles against y e said William Douglass they find for the Defendant 
costs of Court. 

"It is therefore considered by the Court that the former Judgment be 
and hereby is reversed & that the said William Douglass recover against 
the said Charles Knowles cost of Courts in both Actions, immediately 
after this Judgment was entered up the s d Charles Knowles by his 
Attorney moved the Court that he might be allow'd an Appeal from the 
same unto his Majesty in his privy Council, which is granted him and 
Bond is given pursuant to the Royal Charter." 1 

Whether the case was carried to the Privy Council does not 
appear. Douglass was left the victor in the Court of last resort of 
the Province. The plea was the General Issue. What was the 
line of defence in the trials is not shown, except as it may be inferred 
from such evidence and exhibits as are on the files ; but as this is 
evidently but a small portion of the entire evidence, any inference 
from such insufficient premises would be unsafe. 

Among the Early Court Files of Suffolk are some fifty papers, 

1 Records of the Superior Court of Judicature, 1747-50, xvii. 27G. 


including copies and duplicates, which pertain to this case, nearly 
all belonging to the case in review. These were plainly the Court 
papers in the case ; but in the vicissitudes of a hundred years they 
had lost their hie arrangement, been separated from the case and 
mixed indiscriminately in that large and miscellaneous collection, 
till now they have been brought together again. Many of the ori- 
ginal papers, however, have disappeared, including all the plead- 
ings. Among these papers, besides those already alluded to, are 
copies of Knowles's Commission as Rear-Admiral of the White, 
15 July, 1747, and as Commander-in-Chief of his Majesty's 
Ships of War at Jamaica, 12 September, 1747 ; depositions as to his 
conduct in the affair of the Privateer Poultney ; as to his bearing 
as an officer by men who had sailed with him ; full accounts of 
the impressment by men impressed, the captains of the vessels, 
and eye-witnesses of the events ; of his actions on the morning of 
the eighteenth of November when he learned of the Riot and the 
Governor's flight ; and his preparations to come to the rescue of 
the imperilled royal authority and to bombard the town. Some 
of these depositions are very vivid and graphic. A few of them are 
here given in full ; and to these a list of all the papers in the case 
which are still preserved in the Suffolk Court Files is subjoined. 

Iames Barnard Jun! of Lawful Age Testifieth and Saith That about 
the 18 th of November 1747, he was at Work on board of his Majesties 
Ship the Cantebury, under the command of the Honb lt : Charles Knowles, 
Esq 1 ! w ho was then Commodore of his Majesties Squadron then in 
Nantasket Road — and saw the Commodore read a Paper (w ! 1 as M^ 
Ball told him he had lust delivered a Letter from Gov! Shirley to the 
commodore he supposed to be that Letter) As soon as he had done 
reading it he was in a very great Pafsion & in the depon 1 ; 3 hearing said 
Give the word for the Lieu? when the Lieu' came to him he Ordered him 
to give the Signal for all the Captains of the Fleet to repair on Board 
his Ship, & then said where is my Gunner, give the word for the Gunner, 
when the Gunner came he said to him, how many rounds have you filled, 
he answered Nine, the Commodore replyed fill twenty four & Shot the 
lower Tier — he then gave Orders to Unmoor the Ship w ! 1 was done and 
at the same time the Signal was given for the other Ships to unmoor w . 11 
was also done, and the Ship was in right good Order for an Engagement, 
then, said the Commodore By God I'll now see if the Kings Government 
is not as good as a Mob — while the Ship was getting ready Mr Benj* 
Hallowell told the Commodore, that the Wheel was not Ship't, he replyed ; 


Damn it let it be ship't Immediately — the Deport asked Mf Mortimore 1 
whether they would certainly go up to the Town of Boston he answered 
Yes, by God, & we'll show 'em Pumpkin Play. 

James Barnard, Jur 

I, Joseph Ballard of Lawful Age, Testifie and Say that about the 
18'! 1 day of November 1747, being at Work on board his Majesties 
Ship Cantebury in Nantasket Road under the Command of the Hon b ! e 
Charles Knowles Esq!" who was then Commodore of his Majesties Ships 
of War there, Mefs r . 8 Wyer & Flag came from Boston and Informed me, 
there had been a Mob there Occasioned by the Men of War's Boats 
coming up to Town & Imprefsing Several Inhabitants Apprentices &c, 
Just upon which the Kings Ships were Ordered to Unmoor. I Asked 
several of the Lieutenants why they were going up to Town, they An- 
swered to Defend the Governour whom the Mob had drove out of Town 
to the Castle & to Subdue the Mob — while I was putting a Lock on the 
Cabbin Door, the Commodore pafsed by me, and I told him I understood 
the Ships were going up to Boston, and Asked him if it was so he An- 
swered Yes, I then said I hope Sir I shall Lodge with my Wife to Night, 
he replyed he could not tell whether I should or not, — I then Asked 
him what the News was at Town, for I heard there was a great Disturb- 
ance there, he answered Yes there was. I then Desired him to tell me 
what the Ships were going up for, to which he Answered that the Rebels 
had drove the Governor out of town down to the Castle, & that he was 
going to Subdue them. I replyed Oh ! how will that do, Sir the Right- 
eous will suffer with the Wicked, how will you find out the Rebels he 
Answered the North End People were the Rebels. I told him I should 
suffer then for I lived there he replyed no, no I'll take care of that I will 
punish y e guilty I told him he must be very curious in throwing his Shot 
then — at which he smiled — The Signal was made for the Commanding 
Officers of the other Ships to come on Board the Cantebury, & I heard 
the Commodore give Orders to one of the Lieutenants (who I was In- 
formed was a Lieu* of the Warwick,) to get his Ship ready & to prepare 
a number of Rounds of Powder & Ball, And to my best remembrance I 
heard him give the same Orders to another officer. And all the Ships 
Except the Canterbury & Warwick, the Next morning came to sail & 

Anchored in King Road. 

Joseph Ballard. 

Nathaniel Parkman of Lawful Age, Testify's in substance to the 
truth of what M* Joseph Ballard Deposeth, and further saith that he 
saw a paper in the hands of Commodore Knowles which one on ye 

1 This may have been Peter Mortimore, mariner, who was married at Trinity 
Church, Boston, 18 October, 1718, to Mary Wilcocks. See Suffolk Probate 
Files, No. 15,465. 


Quarter Deck said was a Letter from Gov[ Shirley, and which in a great 
pafsion he tore in pieces, and with a severe stamp ordered the Guns to 
be got Reddy to be Loaded (& a number of rounds to be in readinefs) 
with double round & Partridge & the Carpenter to fix the Wheel in order 
to briug the ship to Sail, he likewise gave the Signal for the Commanding 
Officers of the other Ships to come on Board the Cantebury, and when 
they came he ordered them to prepare a number of Double rounds & 
partridges and to get their Ships Immediately Redy to be under Sail to 
go up to Boston, he was asked what he was going to Do to the Town, he 
answered he was going to supprefs the Mob who had drove the Govern- 
our down to the Castle — As they were getting ready to come to Sail, 
one of the Lieutenants who was detained at Boston, came on Board, to 
whom the Commodore said What ? have you got out of the hands of the 
Phillistines ? he answered Yes, well said the Commodore we '11 be revenged 
of them by and by — The Depon! understood from M r Ball 1 the Pilot 
who was in the Round House, that he was very 111 used because he would 
not undertake to Pilot the Cantebury up to Gallows Bay. 

Nath 1 ! Parkman. 
Gershom Flagg of full age testifieth & saith that in the month of 
Novenv: 1747 about y e 18 th Day that I was going on Board His Majes tys 
Ship the Canterbury when the gun was fired & the fore Topsail Loos? the 
signal for sailing and when I Enterd the Ship found they ware Heaveing 
up there ankor I then asked the admiral Charles Knowles Esq r what was 
the matter he told mee he was going to Knock your Town Down. I told 
him S r I am sorrey that the Inocent should suffer with the gilty and 
further told him that no men of Distinction or of any free Hold ware 
among the mob or Riot, he then said he would Down with any that 
Opposed the King's Governour, I told him that my House stood in a 
vally & so I Repair d to my Duty being at work on Board His Ship & 
further saith not. 

Gershom Flagg. 

Sworn to by the Depon* in Superior Court at Boston April 25, 1749. 

Att : Sam 1 Winthrop, Cler. 

There is a deposition by Ebenezer Rockwell, the Pilot of the 
Shirley, a characteristic story of an old salt, who had sailed with Knowles 
on various voyages, and tells how he " never see so contented a Ship's 
Company nor no Gent" ever took Better Caire of his men, Neither would 
he Allow y e Boatswaine nor his Mates nor no other officers to Abuse them, 
and was beloved very much amongst y e Seamen, and they said They 

1 Robert Ball, died in October, 1774 (The Boston Evening Post, No. 2038, 

of Monday, 17 October, 1774). See Suffolk Probate Files, No. 15,703 ; and 

Boston Record Commissioners' Reports, xiii. 309; xv. 318; xix. 50; and xx. 




thought themselves Happy that could Git on board of his Ship with him." 
And in a sort of postscript he remembers " that upon the arrival of M r 
Knowles at Annapolis he was not Saluted by the fort or Castle, but upon 
his going away received the usual Salutes." 

Josiah Gains of Lawful Age Testifieth & Saith that in November 
1747 he was Second Mate of the Ship Mercury John Cathcart Master, 
bound to Madera and that to the best of his remembrance they came to 
sail with a Design of proceeding the Intended Voyage on the 14 th day of 
the s d month, but the Wind proving contrary they brought s d Ship to an 
Anchor a little above the Castle where She lay till the 17 th following. 
On the morning of which day about 4 oth' clock the Deponent was 
Suprized with four Barges & about 80 men well armed belonging to 
the Squadron under the Command of Commodore Knowles then in Nan- 
taskett Rhoad — who Boarded the s d Ship & in a Rough manner de- 
manded all the Keys of the Ship. The Deponent asked them what 
they wanted they reply ed your Men. The Deponent then told them 
s d Ship was Outward bound they Damned him & Order'd him to go 
Immediately into their Boat, or they would drive him, he then said if 
you prefs me you must take charge of the Ship they Damned me again 
& said their Orders from the Commodore was to take every Man 
Except the Captain out of the Ship — at length One of the Lieutenants 
who seemed to be the Commanding Officer among them told this 
Deponent that as the Captain was not aboard he might stay, but 
that M r . Knowles's Express Orders were if the Cap' was on Board 
to Imprefs every Man but him — & so they carried of all the Ships 
Crew the Depon* & two Small Boys only Excepted soon after the 
Wind blew very hard & the Ship was in the utmost distrefs for want 
of hands the Depon 1 every minute Expecting she would drive Ashoar, & 
that a few days after, with the Afsistance of a number of hands from 
the Town, they with much difficulty got the Ships Anchors up but her 
Cables were all cut to pieces. Afterwards the s d Ship was carried 
down to Nantaskett, & moored, but before a sufficient number of hands 
was procured to Man her an Exceeding hard Gale of Wind came on 
which drove her Ashoar, by means whereof she suffered great damage 
in her Bottom, besides the Loss of her Anchors & Cables — in this 
Condition she lay beating among the Rocks about three Weeks & it was 
thought she never would be got of again, however after she was Unloaded 
& Cables & Anchors brought from the Town she was with great Labour 
got of & brought to Town where she was under the Carpenters hands 
upwards of three Weeks afterwards she was carried down to the Island 
where she drove Ashoar to take in her Cargo, but One half was greatly 


damaged & great part utterly lost — The said Deponent also saith that 
soon after the hands were Imprefsed he went with Cap? Cathcart on 
Board the Commodores Ship, when the s d Cap* sent a Letter to Mf 
Knowles (w ch he y e s d Cap* wrote himself) Intreating that his Men might 
be released, but an Officer came out of the Cabbin from M r Knowles for 
Cap 1 Cathcart was not permitted to speak with him & told him the 
Commodore said it would take two or three days Consideration before he 
could Answer his Letter. 
And further the Deponent Saith not. 

Josiah Gaines. 

The Deponant Adds that he was not on board y e Ship when she went 
afhore, but was Told of it by y e Men belonging to the same Ship, by 
whom y e Deponent Also understood there was Seven & Twenty Men on 
Board w T hen the Ship went ashore & when y e Deponant Left y e Ship he 
Left so many men on board her. 

There is the deposition also of John Cathcart, Master of the Vessel, 
who on learning of the impressment of his crew obtained a letter from 
Gov. Shirley to the Commodore ; an account of the measures for the 
relief of his distressed ship ; the delay therein from the suspicion of the 
Commodore that his men were to be decoyed up to town ; the final 
clearance for Barbados, the clangers encountered on the way, and the 
sale of the vessel there, as unsafe for a return, at great loss to the 

There are also depositions of two apprentices overhauled on their trip 
to Noddles Island, who with Yankee independence insisted that they 
could not be touched as " they w r ere about their Master's business," 
but were answered " that was no matter for the Commodore's orders 
were to impress every body," and who were detained " till the Sabbath 
evening following." 

Jonathan Tarbox, a caulker, tells of the seizure of his men in a 

boat on their way to a caulking job, his subsequent recognition, — 

"Aha you've got our caulker," and the release of the whole party 
upon his intercession. 

Benjamin Hallowell testifies to communications made to the Com- 
modore that about thirty of his men of war's men were in Boston, 
who would return if forgiven, but who did not avail themselves of the 
offered forgiveness ; and of other deserters on board outward bound 
vessels ; of boats sent up to recover these, returning with men, when 
Knowles told him he " would not keep a man that belonged to the town 


[of Boston] or the Colonys ; he wanted nothing but strangers," and tried 
to sort them out, but " frequent messages from town that the Mob 
continued & more of his officers were secured," made him decide li that 
now he could not discharge them before he knew the event." 


Volume CCCCVII., Group-number 65.550, Twenty-six papers : — 

1. Original Writ of Review, Douglass v. Knowles, containing en- 
tire record and proceedings in original Case up to date, with return 
of service, etc. 

2. Original Writ of Review, Knowles v. Douglass, likewise con- 
taining same, return of service, etc. 

3. Copy of Power of Attorney from Charles Knowles to Charles 
Apthorp, Thomas Hancock and Jeremiah Gridley to prosecute 
suits for Libel. 

4. Copy of Deposition of Thomas Allen of Jamaica as to exhibi- 
tion to him by Knowles of his Commissions as Rear-Admiral and 
Commander-in-Chief of his Majesty's Ships at Jamaica, etc. 

5 and 6. Copies of same Commissions, dated 15 July and 12 
September, 1747. 

7. Copy of Certificate of Wastel Briscoe, Secretary of his 
Majesty's Island of Jamaica, etc., that Edward Manning, before 
whom the deposition of Thomas Allen (see No. 4, ante) was taken, 
is an Assistant Judge of the Supreme Court of Judicature of 
Jamaica and Gustos liotulorum. 

8. Copy of Certificate of Edward Trelawny, Captain-General 
and Governor-in-Chief, etc., of Jamaica, etc., Chancellor, and Yice- 
Admiral, etc., as to office and authority of Wastel Briscoe. 

9. Deposition of Joseph Ballard as to the occurrences on board 
his Majesty's Ship Canterbury, 18 November, when the news of the 
Riot, etc., was received. 

io. Deposition of James Barnard as to same. 

11. Deposition of John Cathcart, Master of Ship Mercury, as to 
impressment of his men, the consequences, etc. 

12. Deposition of Gershom Flagg as to the occurrences on board 
the Canterbury, 18 November. 

13 and 14. Copies of same. 


15. Deposition of Josiah Gains, second mate of the Mercury, as 
to same matters covered by No. 11. 

16 and 17. Copies of Deposition of Benjamin Hallowell, the 
original being No. 19, post. 

18. Deposition of Benjamin Hallowell as to occurrences on 
board the Lark, when Knowles received a message from town on 
18 November. 

19. Deposition of Benjamin Hallowell as to reports of deserters 
in town and on board outgoing vessels, before the impressment, 
and as to action of Knowles before and after the impressment with 
regard to the men. 

20. Deposition of John Jones, part owner of the privateer 
Poultney, as to affairs concerning her and Knowles's action. 

21. Deposition of Battison Oakley, lieutenant of the ship Boston, 
as to Knowles's flying the flag of Rear-Admiral in Jamaica, and 
being recognized as such and as Commander-in-Chief, etc. 

22. Deposition of Nathaniel Parkman as to occurrences on board 
the Canterbury, 18 November. 

23. Copy of Deposition of Vincent Pearse, late commander of the 
ship Boston, as to Knowles being recognized at Jamaica as Rear- 
Admiral and Commander-in-Chief, and taking the qualifying oaths 
in January, 1748, on arrival. 

24. Deposition of Ebenezer Rockwell, pilot of the Shirley, who 
had sailed with Knowles on voyages, as to his bearing as an officer 
and his reputation among the sailors. 

25. Deposition of Jonathan Tarbox, a caulker, as to his company 
of men, tradesmen, etc., in a boat on its way to Mistick, being im- 
pressed 17 November. 

26. Deposition of James Tyleston, as to occurrences on the 
Canterbury, 18 November. 

Volume CCIX., Group-number 24871, One paper: — 

Verdict in Douglass v. Knowles, on Review. 

Volume CCIX., Group-number 24961, One paper : — 

Verdict in Knowles v. Douglass, on Review. 

Volume CCCXCV., Group-number 63469, Two papers : — 

l. Copy of the Commission of " the honorable Charles Knowles 
Esquire Rear Admiral of the red Squadron of his Majesty's fleet " 


as " Rear Admiral of the White Squadron of his Majesty's fleet," 

2. Copy of the Commission of Knowles as " Commander in Chief 
of his Majesty's ships and vessels employed and to be employed at 
and about Jamaica," etc. 

Volume CCCXCIX., Group-number 64145, One paper : — 

Copy of Record of Case of Knowles v. Douglass in Inferior 
Court of Common Pleas. 

Volume CCCC, Group-number 64272, Two papers : — 

1. Original Power of Attorney, Knowles to Apthorp, et al. 
(same as CCCCVIL, 65.550 : 3, ante), and 

2. Copy of same. 

Volume CCCCI., Group-number 64502, Two papers : — 

1. Original Deposition of Vincent Pearse (see ante, CCCCVIL, 
65.550: 23), and 

2. Copy of same. 

Volume CCCCI., Group-number 64529, Five papers : — 

1. Printed original sheets : Titlepage of " Summary," etc., 
1749; Address to the Reader; and Table of Contents, 8 pp., with 
erasures, interlineations, and corrections in ink, certified as copy. 

2. Printed sheets : pp. 235-238 inclusive of " Summary," erased, 
interlined, and corrected in ink, certified as copy. 

3. Another set of printed leaves, duplicate of No. 1, ante. 

4. Deposition of Gamaliel Rogers and Daniel Fowle, printers, 
as to delivery of " the sheets printed under the Title of a Summary, 
&c," " and particularly No. 15. being delivered to them by William 
Douglass, in his supposed own handwriting, from time to time." 

5. Copy of same Deposition, with a copy of the titlepage of No. 
15 of the " Summary," made in manuscript annexed. 

Volume CCCCIL, Group-number 64662, Five papers : — 

1. Same as CCCCVIL, 65.550 : 4, ante. 

2. Same as CCCCVIL, 65.550 : 8, ante. 

3. Same as CCCCVIL, 65.550 : 7, ante. 

4. Same as CCCXCV., 63.469: 1, ante. 

5. Same as CCCXCV., 63.469: 2, ante. 


Volume CCCCIII., Group-number 64940, One paper: — 

Copy of Record in Superior Court of Judicature upon the Appeal. 

Volume CCCCVL, Group-number 65.515, Two papers : — 

1. Deposition of Samuel Brown ; and 

2. Deposition of Joseph Hammond, two apprentices impressed 
on their way to Noddle's Island in a boat. 

Mr. Henry H. Edes read the following correspondence 1 
between Secretary Willard and Commodore Knowles : — 

Sir, — I doubt not but you will condescend to allow me the Freedom 
to acquaint you with my Grief & Surprize to hear the Name of God 
prophaned yesterday. It seems to me a great Unhappiness that the 
distinguished Reputation you enjoy (& I believe very justly) of a pub- 
lick self denying Spirit & generous Love to your Countrey, and those 
Abilitys of Mind which render these Vertues in a Gentleman of your 
high Rank eminently useful to Mankind, should be in any Degree im- 
paired by such a Practice. I presume you have observed the Sense 
which the Legislature of Great Britain has expressed of this too common 
Evil in their late Act for surpressing it. Because the Rules of Hospitality 
might seem to forbid my interposing in this Case yesterday th6 with 
the greatest Modesty & Humility, I have chosen this Method to dis- 
charge my indispensible Duty as well to you as to that glorious Being 
upon whom I depend for every Moment of my Existence & for every 
Blessing which I enjoy, & at whose awful Tribunal I must very soon 
appear to receive the decisive Sentence of my eternal State. 

I have the utmost Confidence of your Goodness to excuse this Liberty. 

I remain with great respect & with sincere desires of your best 
Prosperity, Sir, 

Your most humble, & 

[J. Willard]. 

Boston, April SO 1 ! 1 , 1747. 
Sir, — I have the favour of Your Letter, and beg to assure You I re- 
ceive Your kind admonition w* great Candor as I perswade myself You 
intended it ; and am truly Sorry I shou'd transgress the Great Comands 
of Our Maker, as well as the Laws of Hospitality ; permit me to assure 
You I have as great an Abhorence of the Crime as any man living has ; 
and tho' I cannot charge my memory with the particular Subject I might 

1 Massachusetts Archives, liii. 231, 232. 


do it upon ; Yet I am perswaded it must have slipp'd from me or You 
cou'd not have laid it to my Charge ; however do me the Justice Sr to 
believe that it is not a common Practice with me ; and that I stand 
convicted, and shall have a more watchfull regard for the future ; 

I sincerly thank Y^ou for Your good Opinion of me, & kind wishes, 
and beg to assure You I entertain the Same Sentiments towards You, 
& am with great truth 

Sir Y'our most Obed*. Hum b ! e Ser* 

Cha? Knowles. 


In the discussion which followed, remarks were made by 
Mr. Philip H. Sears, Mr. Andrew McFarland Davis, and 
Mr. Edward Wheelwright. 

Mr. Edes then communicated some interesting facts con- 
nected with the ownership of the pews in King's Chapel at 
the time of the Evacuation of Boston. He also alluded to 
the fact, that, after the defeat of Braddock, Col. George 
Washington came to Boston to acquaint Governor Shirley 
with the particulars of the death of his son, whose life was 
lost in that engagement. Mr. Edes stated that Washington 
attended service in King's Chapel during that visit, and sat 
in the State Pew. 

Messrs. John Ward Dean, of Medford, and Richard 
Middlecott Saltonstall, of Newton, were elected Resi- 
dent Members. 



A Stated Meeting of the Society was held in the Hall 
of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, on 
Wednesday, 15 April, 1896, at three o'clock in the after- 
noon, President Gould in the chair. 

After the Minutes of the previous Meeting had been read, 
the following Committees were appointed in anticipation of 
the Annual Meeting : — 

To nominate candidates for the several offices, — Messrs. 
James B. Thayer, John Chester Inches, and G. Arthur 

To examine the Treasurer's Accounts, — Messrs. Samuel 
Johnson and David R. Whitney. 

The Hon. George S. Hale communicated a copy of the 
Petition 1 of Martin Brimmer and five French Protestants 
praying to be admitted to citizenship in the Province, as 
follows : — 

To His Excellency Jonathan Belcher Esql Governor & Commander in 
chief in and over his Majesty's Province of Massachusetts bay, to the 
Honorable the Council and the house of Representatives in General Court 

»The Petition of the Persons hereto subscribed Sheweth that the 
'etitioners for the most part were forced to leave their native Country 
f France on account of the Protestant Religion in which they had been 
red up and professed and for which some of the Petitioners have been 
reatly persecuted and distressed. 
And farther the Petitioners most humbly remonstrate to your Excel- 
lency and to this great and General Assembly that the most part of 
them have for almost the space of forty years or upwards (during which 
time they have chieffly resided in this Country) behaved themselves iustly 

. 1 Massachusetts Archives, xi. 488. Cf. ante, p. 200, and 1 Massachusetts 
Historical Society's Proceedings for June, 1859, iv. 349-353. 



to their neighbours, and in their respective callings with unshaken 
fidelity towards the Gouvernement here and the Crown of Great Britain, 
and have been allways subiected as well as to pay rates and taxes, as 
also to bear offices of Constable &c which several of them have sustained 
and executed with great faithfulness, in their respective dutys ; so that 
They hope by the favour of this great and General Court (which is well 
known at all times to act with great equity and to relieve where They 
can the distressed) that as They have been always subiect to do dutys, 
so They may be intituled to all the privileges of a Denisen, or natural 
born Subiect of his Majestys so far as is consistent with the power and 
justice of this great and General Court, jt being what hath been gener- 
aly practiced by most Nations of Europe in favour of the French Protes- 
tant Refugees but more particularly by the Crown of Great Britain, and 
the dependent Colonys, as the Petitioners can prove by many instances. 
Therefore upon the whole the Petitioners do humbly pray an order of 
this great and General Court to confer upon them the rights and privi- 
leges of Denisens, or free born Subiects of the King of Great Britain, or 
be otherwise relieved, notwithstanding any law usage or custom to the 
contrary, or that They may be farther heard by the Council in the prem- 
ises ; They say relieved as this Great and General Court shall judge 
meet ; And as in duty bound your Petitioners shall ever pray &c. 

Andrew Le Mercier 
Daniel Johonnot 
Andrew Sigourney S e 5 
John : Petel 
aDam Duchezeau. 

the same fauour is humble Desired By 

a protestant German Came from Hanover Martin Brimmer 

This petition was read in the Council, 25 February, 1730, when 
it was — 

Ordered that the Prayer of the Petition be so far granted as that the 
Petition rs together with all other foreign Protestants Inhabitants of this 
Province Shall within this Province hold & enjoy all the Privileges & 
Immunities of His Majestys natural born Subjects And that they have 
Leave to bring in a Bill accordingly. 1 

In this the House concurred the next day, and the result was 
the passage of Chapter 9 of the Acts of 1730-31. 2 

1 In the Council Records (xv. 24) the name of the fifth petitioner is entered 
as " Andrew Duckernian." 2 Province Laws, ii. 586, 595. 



Mr. George Lyman Kittredge gave an account of the 
rescue in Barnstable of a barrel of old papers which one of 
the residents was about to destroy, among which, upon ex- 
amination, were found several letters containing interest- 
ing information concerning the state of affairs in Boston 
during the Siege. Some of these letters Professor Kittredge 
promised to communicate to the Society at a future meeting. 

Mr. Abner C. Goodell, Jr., presented a copy of the 
Supplement to the Early Acts and Resolves of Massachusetts 
from 1780 to 1806, to which reference was made at the Feb- 
ruary Meeting of the Society. This volume, prepared by our 
associate Mr. Bacon, contains three hundred and fifty-eight 
Resolves, Orders, Proclamations, Messages, and other legisla- 
tive papers, not included by the Secretary of the Common- 
wealth in the first two volumes of the authorized edition of 
the Laws issued under his supervision by authority of 
Chapter 104 of the Resolves of 1889. 

Mr. Henry E. Woods reported the organization of the 
following named Historical Societies in Massachusetts : — 


On 7 May, 1895, a Society was formed among the undergraduates 
of Harvard College, the purpose of which was stated to be " to 
foster among students interest in the historical associations of 
Harvard, and to perpetuate the traditions of her past." 

The following extracts from a circular issued by the Society will 
explain the intentions of the founders : — 

A primary object of the Society will be to secure courses of lectures 
by distinguished men on subjects connected with the history of Harvard, 
and on famous Presidents and Graduates. Lectures will be arranged on 
Harvard during Colonial Days, the Revolution, the Early Half of the 
Century, and the Civil War. Another object of the Society will be to 
mark rooms or sites of rooms in college buildings once held by famous 
Graduates, by means of tablets of bronze or stone, transmittenda, or 
otherwise. Other sites of historic interest connected with the University 
will be properly marked if possible. Arrangements will be made for the 


collection of pictures, books, and manuscripts connected with the past of 
the University and the proper disposal of the same, so that they may be 
easily accessible. The endeavor of the Society will be to inspire a 
deeper feeling of interest and reverence for the associations and tradi- 
tions of Harvard, to make the students more sensible of their obli- 
gations to those who have made Harvard what she is, and to make 
them acquainted with the part the University and her Graduates 
have played in the history of the country. 

It is the purpose of the Society to admit to active membership only 
Officers of the University and Members of the Senior Class. A limited 
number of men distinguished for their devotion to the interests of the 
University will be elected as Honorary Members. Loyalty to Harvard 
past and present is the first requisite for membership, and it is hoped that 
membership in the organization will be deemed an honor and a privilege. 

The proper marking of the rooms and historic sites will require a con- 
siderable amount of money, which must be collected by subscription. 
The Curator will be glad to receive any pictures, books, or articles of 
interest in any way connected with the history of the University ; and 
the Treasurer will be pleased to receive any subscription which may be 
made towards supporting the work of the Society. 


A Society with the above name was formed in May, 1895. 
Apparently it has no other organization than a Standing Publica- 
tion Committee and a Treasurer, and no other printed or written 
statement of its objects than is contained in the following prospectus, 
which was issued at that time : — 

The Brookline Historical Publication Society is organized to collect 
and print in a uniform series such manuscripts and materials not readily 
accessible as shall seem worthy of permanent preservation. 

There shall be a Publication Committee of three to decide upon all 
matters suggested by the aims of the Society. 

The object of the membership is to provide funds to carry on the work 
of the Society, and each subscriber of the annual fee of one dollar (81.00) 
will receive free all publications of the Society. 

Miss Ellen Chase, 

Daniel S. Sanford, 

Charles K. Bolton, Treasurer, 

Standing Publication Committee. 
N.B. — Subscriptions may be sent at once to the Treasurer at the 
Public Library. 


The Society has been quite active during its brief existence, and 
has published — I. A letter from Rebecca Boylston ; II. The Sharp 
family papers ; III. Brookline in the Revolution ; IV. Papers of 
the White family ; V . Roxbury Church records relating to Brook- 
line. Other work is in preparation. 

A full account of what this Society is doing, and of kindred 
work which is being accomplished in the Brookline schools, was 
published in the New England Magazine, and subsequently re- 
printed in a separate pamphlet 1 by Charles Knowles Bolton, the 
present Treasurer of the Society. 2 


An Historical Society with this title was organized at Bridge- 
water, and incorporated 18 July, 1895. Its purpose is " the collec- 
tion, preservation, and publication of material which shall contribute 
to the history of the Colonial Township of Bridgewater." 


An Association known by this name was organized 18 February, 
1896. The objects of the Society as set forth in the Constitution 
are, " to cultivate and encourage among its members a love for his- 
torical research, the accumulation and preservation of all matters 
of a historical nature relating to the town of Mendon since her first 
settlement in the year 1659, together with those relating to her 
daughter towns which have from time to time established their 
own government, and also the collection and preservation of antique 
relics of every description in any way connected with the past of 
either of these towns." 

Membership is open to any person who shall be regularly elected, 
and who shall sign the Constitution. Four meetings are provided 
for each year. 


An Organization with the above name was effected 24 March, 
1896. The objects of the Society are to see to it that historical 

1 Its title is, " What a Small Town may do for Itself." 

2 The Lawrence Society of Natural History and Archseology was incorpo- 
rated at Lawrence, 8 March, 1895. Its purpose is " to promote the study of 
natural history and archaeology." 



locations in that District are properly cared for, and in the course 
of time marked with suitable tablets; and also to promote good- 
fellowship and the furtherance of a social feeling among the resi- 
dents of the District. 

Mr. Andrew McFarland Davis read the following ac- 
count of a suit begun at the York term of the Court of 
Common Pleas, in 1734, in which the Superior Court of 
Judicature twice refused to obey the Order of the King in 

York ss. 1734. 

In 1808 the Supreme Court of the United States was called 
upon in Marbury v. Madison 2 to discuss the question whether that 
Court could exercise authority conferred upon it by Act of Con- 
gress, but not warranted by the Constitution. The decision reached 
by the Court was that a law repugnant to the Constitution was 
void. The importance of this claim on the part of the Court, that 
under its power to interpret the Constitution the deliberate action 
of Congress in passing a law, and of the Executive in approving 
the same, could be annulled and made of no effect, compelled an 
elaborate justification of the position taken by the Court. Long 
years of acquiescence in the conclusion then reached have obscured 
the fact that the question, when it arose, was a novel one. Pre- 
cedents of interpretation were then mainly derived from English 
Courts. In England Parliament was paramount, and the power of 

i My attention was called to this suit by Mr. William P. Upham, who is en- 
gaged in arranging the old papers in the Suffolk Court Files. If they shall 
prove to have the value to students of Constitutional Law which I attribute to 
them, my gratitude to Mr. Upham for this service on his part will readily be 

1 wish also to express my appreciation of the many courtesies received from 
our associate Mr. John Noble, while examining these and other papers under 
his charge at the Suffolk office. The admirable arrangement of the papers, and 
the manner in which they have been mounted for reference, leave nothing to 
be desired on the part of historical students. 

2 1 Cranch, 137. The student of Constitutional Law will find an excellent 
abstract of this case in Cases on Constitutional Law, by our associate James 
Bradley Thayer, Cambridge, 1895. 


the Courts was limited to the interpretation and enforcement of the 
laws. Experience under written Constitutions was practically 
limited to this country, and to the few years which had passed 
since the Revolution. The able, exhaustive, and convincing opinion 
of Chief Justice Marshall in this case depends almost exclusively 
upon the reasonable nature of its own statements and the convin- 
cing power of their logical presentation. 1 

For many years students of Constitutional law have indulged in 
speculations as to the possible effects on the minds of the jurists of 
the day of the appellate powers lodged in the Privy Council. In 
the early charters granted to royal favorites and merchant adven- 
turers, the theory prevailed that the affairs of the distant settlements 
were to be administered by a home company, and the restraining 
clause that no laws should be passed which should be repugnant 
to the laws of England was deemed adequate protection for the 
maintenance of the supervisory power of the government. After 
it was found that under these clauses the Colonists disputed the 
rights of aggrieved parties to appeal to the Crown from the decisions 
of the local courts, more explicit reservations on this point were 
made in Provincial Charters. 2 There was no provision in the 
Charter of Connecticut for appeals to the Privy Council. Never- 
theless, when the point was raised in Winthrop v. Lechmere that a 
law passed by the Assembly of Connecticut was void because it 
was contrary to the laws of England and not warranted by the 
Charter of the Colony, the appeal, although not allowed by the 
Connecticut Courts, was entertained by the Privy Council, and 
the Act in question was declared to be null and void. 3 In this 

1 The early cases under State Constitutions where the question of the consti- 
tutionality of a law was under discussion have been collated by Professor Thayer 
in his Cases on Constitutional Law. Holmes v. Walton, a New Jersey case in 
1780, mentioned in a note on page 62, is said to have been an important case, 
and to have been discussed in the Constitutional Convention. See also Trevett 
v. Weeden, Rhode Island, 1786, page 73 et seq. ; Den d. Bayard and Wife v. 
Singleton, North Carolina, 1787, page 78 et seq. : and Van Home's Lessee v. 
Dorrance, Circuit Court, Pennsylvania District, 1795, page 94 et seq. 

2 The question of appeals from Colonial Courts was fully discussed by 
Harold D. Hazeltine, in 1894, before the American Historical Association. 
(Annual Report of the American Historical Association for the year 1894, 
pp. 299-350). 

3 It seems to me that Palfrey is disposed to underestimate the importance of 
this case. He speaks of the reservation in the Charter to the effect that the Leg- 


case it will be observed that it was the Privy Council exercising 
appellate powers, which decided that the Act was void because 
opposed to a clause in that Charter. In what follows in this 
paper I propose to give the history of a case in our own courts in 
which the Superior Court of Judicature of the Massachusetts Bay 
twice refused to carry out a Royal Order, issued by his Majesty in 
Privy Council, giving as a reason for such refusals that the Charter 
of the Province did not confer upon them powers which would 
enable them to obey the order. We are left to an inference, based 
upon the brief of the attorney for the plaintiff, to determine why 
the Court concluded that they did not have power to carry out the 
Royal Order. The case was one which did not of right carry with 
it an appeal to the Privy Council, and the Province Court denied 
the motion for an allowance of the appeal. Nevertheless, the 
Council entertained the appeal ; and afterward, in the hearing be- 
fore the Superior Court of Judicature, upon the presentation of the 
Royal Order, the attorney for the plaintiff made the point that the 
Privy Council had no right to hear the case on appeal. The Court 
evidently adopted this view of the question, and regarded the 
Royal Order, not as a determination of the case on appeal, but as 
an order in a proceeding which had its origin in the Privy Council. 
The order of the Privy Council was to the effect that the .Court 
should compel the plaintiff to refund certain moneys to the defend- 
ant, and that he should be permitted to plead anew in the proceed- 

islature could make no laws contrary to the laws and statutes of the realm of 
England, as " a provision which had little practical significance " (History of 
New England, ii. 541). When he discusses this case he says, " Winthrop's wife 
produced to the Governor a record of an Order of the King in Council, overrul- 
ing that action of the Connecticut Courts of which Winthrop had complained; 
and the Assembly ordered the Secretary to proceed to put Winthrop in posses- 
sion of the land claimed by him, as soon as the bounds and qnantity of said 
land should be ascertained." Notwithstanding this practical application of the 
determination of the Privy Council, he then goes on to say : " Connecticut could 
not be brought to accede to the determination of the Privy Council. And at 
length, nearly twenty years after the adverse decree of that body, the Provincial 
law was sanctioned by a decision of the Council, under advice of the Crown law- 
yers " (Ibid. iv. 578). The Crown lawyers were of opinion that this reservation 
was of force, and that any law which violated it was null and void " (Chalmers's 
Opinions, London edition, 1814, i. 347, 354). This last opinion ends as fol- 
lows: "If any laws have been there made, repugnant to the laws of England, 
they are absolutely null and void." 


ings. If the appeal had been regular in form, this order might 
perhaps have been acceptable to the Court. If the case was not 
properly before the Privy Council, then the Court could say, as 
they did, There is no provision in our laws for any such proceed- 
ing as this order calls for. 1 

In Marbury v. Madison the Supreme Court, exercising their 
power to interpret the Constitution, decided that under that instru- 
ment no authority was conferred upon the Supreme Court in the 
exercise of original jurisdiction to issue a mandamus. The Act 
through which Congress attempted to confer upon the Court that 
power was void, because Congress could not add to the powers of 
the Court. 

In Frost v. Leighton the Superior Court of Judicature, inter- 
preting the Charter and the laws through which they derived their 
powers, decided that they found no authority by any law of the 
Province or usage of the Court to enforce the order issued by the 
King in Privy Council. It did not need that they should add that 
their powers could not be enlarged through a Royal Order. 

Under the Charter of the Province of the Massachusetts Bay all 
trees of the diameter of twenty-four inches and upwards, at the 
height of twelve inches from the ground, growing on any tract of 
land within the Province which had not on the seventh of October, 
1691, been granted to any private person, were reserved to the 
Crown for the better providing and furnishing masts for the Royal 

On the nineteenth of June, 1730, a license was granted by the 
King to Ralph Gulston 2 of the City of London, merchant, his 

1 " His Majesty cannot, by law, give a direction to any court for to rehear 
any cause depending therein, but rehearings are granted, or denied, by courts of 
equity, on petition of the parties grieved, to such court as shall be judged 
proper." (From the opinion of Edward Northey, given to the Board of Trade, 
19 December, 1717, in Opinions of Eminent Lawyers on various points of 
English Jurisprudence, chiefly concerning the Colonies, Fisheries, and Commerce 
of Great Britain. Collected, and digested from the originals, in the Board of 
Trade, and other depositories. By George Chalmers, Esq., F. R. S. and S. A. 
London, 1814, ii. 177. This work is generally cited as Chalmers's Opinions.) 

2 I am indebted to Mr. Edward M. Borrajo of the Guildhall Library, Lon- 
don, for the following information concerning Ralph Gulston : — 

11 In the Gentleman's Magazine (ix. 161) the death of Ralph Gulston, Esq., Turkey 
Merchant, is recorded under date March 11, 1739. This Gulston was a member of a 



agents and workmen, to search the woods in the Province of Maine 
and Colonies of New England, where the property in any woods or 
trees and the right of cutting them were reserved to the Crown, 
and there to cut down as many good and sound trees as might 
answer the number and dimensions expressed in a certain contract, 
which the said Gulston had entered into for furnishing the Royal 
Navy with masts. For the purpose of carrying out this contract, 
Gulston appointed Samuel Waldo of Boston his agent ; and Waldo 
in turn employed one William Leighton, a resident of Kittery, to 
superintend the actual cutting and loading of the masts. In the 
performance of this work, Leighton with a gang of men went into 
some woods in Berwick in the winter of 1733-34, taking with him 
his logging-teams. He erected a wigwam, and when finally camped 
and ready for the season's work, began cutting trees. He felled a 
number of pine-trees and hauled them away ; and in order to facili- 
tate this process he also cut down a great number of small trees of 
various kinds, which were used for beds for the large trees. The 
land upon which these woods stood when Leighton entered upon 
his work formed a part of a farm in Berwick containing about five 
hundred and twenty acres, known as the Caroline Farm, and be- 
longing at that time to one John Frost of Berwick. It was alleged 
that at the time when the Charter of William and Mary was 
granted, the title to these lands was in the Crown. 

John Frost, the owner of the land, becoming cognizant of the 
acts of Leighton, brought suit against him on the fourth of March, 
1733-34, in the Inferior Court of Common Pleas, laying his 
damages at two hundred pounds. The plea was trespass, and the 
writ was returnable at the April term of the Court to be held at 
York. Frost alleged that Leighton had with force and arms en- 
tered upon his farm and cut down seven pine-trees, each of three 
feet in diameter, and each of the value of ten pounds, and that of 
these he had hauled away six. The cutting was also alleged of 

distinguished family which traces its pedigree from Sir Balph Gulston, knighted on the 
field of Oressy by the Black Prince, a. d. 1346 ; he was the second son of William Gulston, 
and grandson of Joseph Gulston, Dean of Chichester, Chaplain and Almoner of Charles 
I., and present with him at his execution. Ralph was born in 1684, and appears to have 
died without issue. That this Ralph Gulston was identical with your man seems prob- 
able. I may add that the address given in a directory of the time is ' Great St. Helen's.' " 
Mr. Henry E. Woods was kind enough to look up this matter, and through 
independent sources of information reached the same conclusion as Mr. Borrajo. 


one other pine-tree, of four beech-trees, one maple-tree, four hem- 
lock-trees, twenty beech-trees or poles, three spruce-trees or poles, 
five maple-trees or poles, and two black birch-trees or poles. The 
total value of all the trees and poles thus cut was stated to be 
£120. Frost asserted that they were his property, and that they 
were cut without his permission. 

The April term of the Court of Common Pleas for York County 
in 1734 was held on the first Tuesday of .that month. Leighton 
put in an appearance, through William Shirley his attorney, and 
for plea admitted and defended the force and injury, but pleaded 
not guilty to the coming with force and arms ; and of that he put 
himself on his country. As to the cutting down of the trees as 
alleged, he admitted that he, as a workman of Gulston, by direc- 
tion of Waldo his agent, acting under the license granted to Gulston, 
had entered into a part of the woods in the Province of Maine, which 
had not been granted to any private person before the seventh day 
of October, 1691, and had cut down the pine-trees, and also the 
other trees arid poles, in order to the felling and carrying away of 
the said seven pine-trees, the cutting down of the other trees being 
absolutely necessary for that purpose. He recited the rights of 
the Crown reserved in the Charter to trees upon unoccupied lands, 
proffered the license granted to Gulston June 19, 1730, and alleged 
that the seven pine-trees which had been cut down had been first 
viewed and allowed by David Dunbar, Esq., Surveyor-General of 
his Majesty's woods on the Continent of America. For these 
reasons he pleaded that Frost ought not to have any action against 
him, and he prayed for judgment on this point. 

On these papers the case came on for trial. The defendant con- 
tended that the failure of the plaintiff to reply or demur to his plea 
was an admission of the facts stated in them ; but the Court thought 
otherwise, and called upon the defendant to make some other plea. 
This the defendant refused to do, and the Court thereupon awarded 
judgment against him. In a petition subsequently made by Leigh- 
ton to the Privy Council, this proceeding is described in the fol- 
lowing language : — 

" Whereupon it was considered by the Court, instantly and imme- 
diately (without any proofs of the Plaintiff's property, or any proof of 
the supposed damages, or value of the same, or referring it to a Jury to 


enquire of the Plaintiff's pretended damages) that the Plaintiff should 
recover of the Petitioner a particular sum of one hundred and twenty 
one pounds damages, and costs of Court taxed at forty shillings." 

Shirley, on the fourth of May, 1734, filed his reasons of appeal, 
which were that the judgment was wrong and erroneous ; that the 
action ought to have been barred upon the plea in bar ; and that 
the trees mentioned in the writ were not the property of the plain- 
tiff, but belonged to the Crown, and that the defendant had lawful 
authority to cut them down and haul them away. The case was 
heard by the Superior Court of Judicature, June 19, 1734, and 
the opinion of the Court was delivered as follows : — 

" The Court is of opinion that the Defendants plea containing sundry 
matters of fact triable by Jury, should have concluded to the Country 
or the defendant have pleaded the General Issue & given the special 
matter in evidence. It's therefore Considered by the Court that the 
former Judgment of the Inferior Court be & hereby is affirmed & that 
the Appellee recover against the Appellant costs of suit." 

Execution was thereupon issued, and the amount of the judg- 
ment was collected from Leighton. It is obvious from this that 
Shirley's pleadings were considered by the Court defective. It is 
not unlikely that he was anxious to avoid submitting his case to a 
jury; but whether the decision of the Court upon this point of 
practice was erroneous, or Shirley was at fault, he lost his case. 
He at once moved for an appeal to the Privy Council ; but this the 
Court refused, saying that in their opinion an appeal would not lie 
in this case. The reasons of the Court for this opinion are not stated 
in the order of the Court denying the appeal ; but it is evident that 
they were grounded upon the clause in the Charter which allowed 
appeals to the Privy Council as of right where the matter in differ- 
ence exceeded the value of three hundred pounds sterling. In 
this case, the judgment was for only one hundred and twenty-one 
pounds and costs. 

Gulston, the contractor, then appealed to the Duke of Newcastle, 
who, on the third of October, 1734, wrote to Governor Belcher 
enclosing the complaint. Belcher laid the matter before the Gen- 
eral Court, and on the ninth of December wrote the Duke of 
Newcastle, enclosing a printed account of the steps taken for the 


preservation of his Majesty's woods. 1 Referring to the case under 
consideration, Belcher added in his letter, — 

u As I have been always ready to do everything in my power to pro- 
tect the Kings right in the woods and to prevent from waste and Spoil 
so I shall still by giving assistance and encouragement to the contractors 
workmen in the legal execution of their businefs and by doing what in 
me lyes to put a stop to any unjust and vexatious prosecutions against 
them. But your Grace is very sensible that its not in the power of a 
Gov r to stop the course of the law and should a war happen I shall 
when I think there is any foundation give the Contractors workmen 
what protection I can against the French and Indians." 

Leighton then petitioned the Privy Council for a hearing before 
them on appeal. The date of this petition is not known, but it is 
not probable that the petition was long deferred. The prayer of 
the petitioner was not granted until 9 July, 1735. Leighton then 
filed his petition for a reversal of the judgments in the -Province 
Courts, and for the restoration to him of the money which had 
been collected on execution, and for other relief in the premises. 
On the thirtieth of July, 1735, the appeal was referred to the 
Right Honorable the Lords of the Committee of Council for hear- 
ing Appeals from the Plantations ; and on the second of April, 
1736, they reported, saying that they had heard all parties con- 
cerned by counsel learned in the law, and that they humbly agreed 
to recommend to his Majesty (by the consent of all parties) that 
both judgments should be reversed ; that the money collected of 
Leighton should be restored ; that the appellant should withdraw 
his plea, plead not guilty, and upon the general issue be at liberty 
to give any special matter in evidence. They further recom- 

1 6 Massachusetts Historical Collections (Belcher Papers), vii. 479. Letter, 
9 December, 1734, to the Duke of Newcastle, etc. This letter is as follows : — 
May it please your Grace : 

The 18 : of last mo : I rec'd the honour of his Majestys commands by 
y r Graces letter of the 3 d of October respecting a complaint made by Mr Gul- 
ston the contractor for supplying His Majestys Navy with masts from this 
Country which letter with the copy of the Complaint inclos'd by your Grace I 
first of all laid before His Majestys Council here and then before the General 
Assembly now sitting that the whole Legislature might exert themselves in an 
affair that so highly concerns the good of the service and the inclos'd print will 
give your Grace an account of the particular steps taken for the better preserva- 
tion of His Majestys Woods. 

Then follows what is quoted in the text. 


mended that upon such new trial the evidence should be reduced 
to writing and recorded with the verdict, and that an appeal to the 
Privy Council from such verdict should be allowed to either party. 
This report was submitted 29 April, 173G, and the King, with the 
advice of the Privy Council, approved of the same, and ordered 
that it be duly and punctually observed and complied with. The 
Governor or Commander-in-Chief of His Majesty's Province of the 
Massachusetts Bay, and all others whom it might concern, were 
ordered to take notice and govern themselves accordingly. 

The Royal Order having been obtained, the scene of action was 
transferred to the other side of the Atlantic. Leighton also made 
a change in his attorney, and William Bollan was employed to pre- 
sent the Royal Order and secure from the Court the orders necessary 
to make it effectual. At the September term of the Superior Court 
of Judicature, Court of Assize and General Gaol delivery, held at 
Bristol, William Bollan appeared in behalf of Leighton, and on 
the eighteenth of the month presented the Royal Order, and moved 
that the Court should issue execution against John Frost for the 
sum of £125 18 s. paid by William Leighton to him on the execution 
issued by the Superior Court in 1734 in the suit of Frost v. Leigh- 
ton, so that the said Frost might be compelled to restore this sum 
to the said Leighton according to his Majesty's order, and also that 
the said order might be observed and complied with in all respects, 
duly. The Royal Order was publicly read in Court, and the clerk 
was directed to enter it in the records of the Court ; but further 
consideration of it was deferred to the June sitting of the Court at 
York, in 1737. Bollan's motion, originally made at Bristol, 18 
September, 1736, was renewed at York the twenty-second of June, 
1737, and the decision of the Court thereon was expressed in the 
following language : — 

" Upon reading the above motion the subject matter whereof requiring 
the most mature consideration the Court will advise thereon until their 
next sitting." 

In the docket of the Superior Court of Judicature there is an 
entry under date of 20 June, 1737, which was subsequently crossed 
out, which would seem to indicate that the Court had at one time 
concluded to hear arguments as to whether the Royal Order could 
be carried out. The language of the crossed-out entry is as 
follows : — 


" The Court took the Royal Order into consideration & are of opinion 
that if the sd Will™ Leighton expect any order from this Court thereupon 
he ought to take out a sumons from the Clerks office of this Court & re- 
turnable as other procefs is to notify the sd John Frost to shew [cause] 
if any he has why the said Order of His Majesty should not be complied 
with on the part [of the said] John Frost ; Upon the return of wch 
sumons & hearing [the parties concerned] this Court will then be able to 
make such further order in the premises as] to Law & as to Justice 

On the next page the decision of the Court deferring action was 
entered in the margin under date of 22 June, .1737. The next 
that is to be heard of the case is at the sitting of the Superior Court 
held at York on the third Wednesday of June, being the twenty- 
first day of said month, Anno Domini 1738, when the Court ren- 
dered the following decision : — 

"The Court having advised upon the said motion till this term do now 
in answer thereto say that in case the Action mentioned in the said 
Royal order come upon trial again before this Court in the manner 
directed to this [Court] shall endeavor to do what to Justice appertains, 
but as to giving an Order for an execution against John Frost as prayed 
for, The Court having considered the Royal Charter together with the 
Laws of this Province and the Constant Usage & Practice of this Court 
are of opinion that they have no Authority to give order for such an 

Leighton had filed the Royal Order in the Superior Court, and 
moved for an execution, so that the same might be duly en- 
forced, in September, 1736. It had taken nearly two years to 
secure a decision from the Court ; and when after all this delay the 
decision was promulgated, the attitude of the judges was found to 
be so defiant as to put an end to all hopes of securing the restora- 
tion of the money through the agency of the Court. Leighton 
therefore now turned to the Governor of the Province. A petition 
was addressed directly to that official by William Bollan, attorney 
for William Leighton, in which a detailed statement of the various 
proceedings in Court and Privy Council in the case of Frost v. 
Leighton were fully set forth. The petitioner averred that he 
resorted to the Governor of the Province to cause the order of his 
Majesty to be observed and complied with, and to that end he 



caused to be delivered by his attorney to his Excellency the original 
order of his Majesty in Privy Council. 

The Royal Order was addressed in particular to the Governor of 
the Province, and in a general way to all whom it might concern. 
The Governor was the direct appointee of the Crown, and, irrespec- 
tive of the fact that he was specially mentioned in the order, might 
be relied upon to carry out the wishes of the Crown so far as they 
were practicable. He could certainly be counted upon in a matter 
in which so much interest was taken at Court as the question of 
the supply of the royal navy with masts. There was method, 
therefore, in Bollan's addressing his petition to the Governor alone, 
and not to the Governor and Council. Belcher was not, however, 
to be caught in this net. However much he might wish to sustain 
the rights of the Crown, he knew that the cutting of trees for masts 
for the royal navy was a burning question with the residents in 
Maine, and that any overt act on his part would make him un- 
popular. He therefore laid this petition before the Council on the 
fourteenth of September, 1738, and they thereupon considered the 
matter, and said that inasmuch as Leighton had sought a remedy in 
the Courts and had made no application to his Excellency till 
after the proceedings in the Superior Court, the Board were of 
opinion that it was not proper for his Excellency to do anything in 
the affair. This solution of the perplexities of the situation being 
entirely in accordance with Belcher's wishes, he himself indorsed 
upon the petition his approval of the action of the Board in the 
following words : — 

"The foregoing advice of His Majesty's Council being agreeable to 
my own Sentiments I am prevented doing any service in this affair. 

Septem r 18: 1738. J. Belcher." 

Thwarted in his attempts to enforce the Royal Order through 
the refusal of the Courts of the Province to carry them out, and 
through the refusal of the Governor to intervene, Leighton's posi- 
tion seemed hopeless. However powerful the influences which had 
sustained his side of the case, which had led the Privy Coun- 
cil to entertain an appeal which did not come within the defini- 
tion of those allowable under the Charter, and which had produced 
an order of the Privy Council imposing upon the Superior Court of 



the Province duties beyond their powers under the Charter, he 
seemed to have exhausted his resources without accomplishing his 
design, and to be to all intents and purposes absolutely helpless. 
The stake was, however, too great to be abandoned without another 
effort. Neither the King, the Privy Council, nor the contractor 
could afford to let the impression prevail that they would yield 
their rights under the Charter to cut masts for the navy in the 
Maine woods, without putting forth every effort which lay in their 
power to protect them. Feeble as the chances seemed of accom- 
plishing anything through the Privy Council after the Province 
Courts had deliberately refused to carry out the Royal Order, 
nevertheless, the next step was to petition that body for relief, 
and that the former order might be enforced. 

This petition was presented 21 December, 1738. It recites the 
former proceedings, which concluded with the Royal Order, and 
then rehearses the attempts made by Leighton to secure its en- 
forcement ; avers that the order of the Court declaring that the 
subject required the most mature consideration, and referring this 
consideration to their next sitting, delayed the petition "another 
whole year ; " recites the final decision of the Court, and then adds 
that the Superior Court, having thus taken near two years to con- 
sider whether they would obey his Majesty's said order or not, 
and having at length declared they could not pay obedience to it, 
the petitioner had no other resort in that country but to apply to 
his Majesty's Governor there (who was particularly charged to 
take notice of such order and govern himself accordingly) ; alleges 
that in the hopes that the Governor might make use of the authority 
with which he was invested, the petitioner presented a petition to 
him praying him to enforce the order, this petition being accompa- 
nied with the original Royal Order in the case ; and states that not- 
withstanding this direct appeal to the Governor, he saw fit to refer 
the matter to his Council, a body not composed of appointees of the 
Crown, but of members elected from time to time by the Assembly. 
The action of the Council is then recited, and the statement is 
made that the Governor, on the eighteenth of September, approved 
this action with his own hand. The petitioner then goes on to say 
that in this very extraordinary manner, his Majesty's said judicial 
order, made with the advice of the Privy Council, after the solemn 
hearing of the parties upon the appeal, had been deliberately 


and contemptuously defeated in the Massachusetts Bay, and all 
obedience thereto refused by the said Superior Court, by the Coun- 
cil, and by his Majesty's own Governor of that Province, who had 
been particularly charged to take notice thereof, whereby the Peti- 
tioner was very greatly injured and aggrieved, and that in a case 
where he (at his own expense) was laboring to support his Majesty's 
right to the woods reserved for the use of his royal navy ; and not 
only so, but his Majesty's Royal Authority had been wholly set 
aside, and more especially by the express declaration of the said 
Governor in writing that it was agreeable to his own sentiments 
that his Majesty's said order should not be assisted or carried into 
execution ; which the Petitioner humbly represents as a matter of 
the highest consequence to his Majesty's just and undoubted 
authority in America, and the like instance whereof he conceived 
had not been heard of. 

The petition was referred to a Committee of the Council, and 
counsel were heard as well in behalf of the petitioner as of the 
Governor, Council, and Superior Court of Judicature of the Mas- 
sachusetts Bay. On the twenty-third of February, 1738-39, this 
Committee reported that the Royal Order had not been carried into 
execution either in the whole or in part, and on the twenty -second of 
March, 1738-39, 1 it was ordered by his Majesty in Council that — 

" the said former order, made by His Majesty at this Board on the 
twenty-ninth of April, 1736, upon the petitioners appeal against John 
Frost, be forthwith, and without delay, carried into execution, and that 
the said John Frost do immediately restore to the petitioner the money 
paid to him for damages & costs, and in case he shall refuse to comply 
therewith, that the Superior Court in the said Province do take the 
necessary steps to compel him thereto." 

1 Thinking that possibly there might be something among the Privy Council 
Records which would throw some light upon these proceedings, I made applica- 
tion to the Privy Council Office for information upon the subject. I am indebted 
to the courtesy of Mr. Thomas Preston, Record Clerk, for the following : — 

"The Registers contain just bare minutes of the proceedings & the orders. The 
dates are as follows : — 

Heard 2 April 1736 

Tet 11 to enforce order 21 Deer 1738 

Report & order 23 Feb 1738 

Further order 22 Mar 1738 " 


The Courts were instructed to record this order as well as the 
former order ; and the Governor was required to support his Ma- 
jesty's authority, and to cause every particular in the order to be, 
without delay, duly and punctually complied with. Fortified with 
this second order, Bolian, in behalf of his client, on the fifth of 
June, proceeded to make a demand on Frost as a preliminary for 
further proceedings. For this purpose he procured one Theodore 
Atkinson of Portsmouth to deliver, in behalf of William Leighton, 
the order of his Majesty in Council of date of 22 March, 1738-39, 
to John Frost, and at the same time Atkinson also delivered a 
power of attorney executed by Leighton, authorizing Atkinson to 
demand and receive the one hundred and twenty-one pounds 
damages, and four pounds eighteen shillings costs of suit which 
had been collected from Leighton. Frost delivered these papers 
to his attorney, one Noah Emery, who then and there read them 
word for word to Frost. Atkinson then demanded payment, and 
offered to give proper receipts, discharges, or acquittances. To 
this demand Frost replied, — 

" I will not repay the said sums nor any part thereof but will stand 
the chance of an execution from the Superior Court." 

Afterwards, on the same day, Leighton personally made the 
same demand of Frost, with the same result. Frost then returned 
the Royal Order and power of attorney to Atkinson. Having thus 
established a basis for further action, Bolian presented a petition to 
the Governor, in which he recited the facts of the case which had 
taken place up to date. He announced his intention of appearing 
before the Superior Court at York at their sitting in June, in order 
that he might move for an execution, and also of appearing before 
the Inferior Court at their sitting at York in July in order to move 
'or permission to change his plea. He presented the second Royal 
Order for the Governor's inspection, and prayed him to support his 
Majesty's authority. This petition was referred to the Council, 
and on the fifteenth of June they voted to recommend the Courts 
to proceed without delay and do that which to law and justice 
appertains. The Royal Order was returned to Bolian on the six- 
teenth of June. On the twenty-first of June, at a sitting of the 
Superior Court held at York, Bolian submitted this document to 
bhe Court. The Clerk of the Court, with sublime disregard for the 


part which the Court had taken in the contest, indorsed upon the 
back of the Royal Order, — 

" His Ma tys second order in Councill on the Peticon of W m Leigh ton 
complaining of the high contempt & disobedience shewn by Gov r Belcher 
to his Ma tys former order in Councill. This ord r being produced by Mr 
Bollan was read in Court June 21st 1739. 

Att 1 - S. Tyley Clerk.* 

At the same time Bollan presented a Memorial and Petition 
based upon the Royal Order praying for an execution against Frost 
in order that he might be compelled to restore Leighton his money 
according to the Royal Order. Frost, through Noah Emery, his 
attorney, 1 filed a written answer to this petition. He humbly 

1 Willis, in his History of Portland, gives us the following particulars con- 
cerning Emery : — 

"Noah Emery of Kittery was for many years the only lawyer in Maine ; he 
commenced practice about 1725, and although not regularly bred to the profes- 
sion, he was a man of talents, a ready draftsman, and had considerable prac- 
tice. On one occasion, between 1720 and 1730, an action of trespass was com- 
menced in the Inferior Court of York by Matthew Livermore for the plaintiff. 
William Shirley of Boston, afterward Governor of Massachusetts, for the de- 
fendant, filed a special plea ; but as special pleading was rarely used in that 
day and by the practising attorneys of those times little understood, and much 
less by the Court, the plea was answered by some ore tenus observations by the 
plaintiff's counsel, and the cause went to trial ' somehow or other.' The ver- 
dict was for the plaintiff, and the defendant appealed to the Superior Court, 
where the cause went again in favor of the plaintiff and execution issued. The 
defendant entered a complaint to the King in Council, and an order was issued 
thereon to set the whole proceedings aside, on account of the defective plead- 
ings in the Inferior Court. The order of restitution was addressed to the 
Superior Court, and Mr. Auchmuty, an able lawyer of Boston, made an earnest 
application to the Court to have the order carried into effect ; the Court was 
somewhat perplexed on the occasion, but Mr. Emery, as counsel for the plain- 
tiff, drew up an answer to Mr. Auchmuty's petition, in substance as follows: 
That the Superior Court of Judicature was a court constituted by the law of 
the Province, whereby they were authorized to hear and determine such civil 
matters therein mentioned as were made cognizable by them, and to render 
judgment thereon, and to issue execution pursuant to their own judgment 
and not otherwise. And if counsel for the defendant in this case had obtained 
a different judgment from what appeared upon their records, he must go there 
for his execution, as they were not by law empowered to issue any execution 
contrary to the record of their own judgment. The Court were satisfied with 


prayed that nothing in his reasons and in his objections there men- 
tioned might be taken as any contempt of his Majesty's royal 
authority or as wilful disobedience of any of his Royal Orders, 
which he was then and always had been ready to obey in all things 
lawful and right as far as he understood them. For reasons why 
the Court ought not to grant execution, he alleged that under the 
Charter, power was given to pass laws and constitute courts. From 
the decisions of such courts appeals might be had to the Privy 
Council where the value of the matter in dispute exceeded three 
hundred pounds. In pursuance of this authority to create courts 
the Superior Court was duly constituted, and the act establishing it 
received the royal sanction. No power was conferred in this Act 
which would enable the Superior Court to issue an execution upon 
the judgment of another court ; therefore the Court could not issue 
that execution. Further, it was provided that appeals from judg- 
ments in this Province to the Privy Council should, lie where the 
matter in difference exceeded three hundred pounds. The defen- 
dant conceived that the meaning of this was that no appeal would 
lie unless the matter in difference should exceed three hundred 
pounds. 1 If an appeal from a judgment in this Province should be 
obtained contrary to the Charter and to the usage in the Province, 
and if the parties to the suit should enter into an agreement to re- 

this answer, and complimented Mr. Emery upon the manner in which he 
relieved them from their embarrassment. Mr. Auchmuty acquiesced in the 
decision." [Reference, Judge Sewall MSS.] (The History of Portland from 
1632 t© 1864 : With a notice of previous settlements, colonial grants, and 
changes of government in Maine, by William Willis, second edition, Portland, 
1865, pp. 616, 617.) 

Notwithstanding the variations between the account of the above suit and 
the story of Frost v. Leighton, there can be but little doubt that this is an 
attempt to tell the story of that suit from memory. 

1 The Board of Trade were advised to the contrary by their counsel: "And 
as to the instructions given to the Governor mentioned in the petition, whereby 
he is restrained from allowing an appeal in any case under the value of £500 
sterling, that does restrain the Governor only from granting of appeals under 
that value, notwithstanding which, it is in his Majesty's power, upon a petition, 
to allow an appeal in cases of any value, where he shall think fit, and such 
appeals have been often allowed by his Majesty." . . . (From the opinion of 
Edward Northey, 19 December, 1717, on a petition to the Board of Trade, by 
William Cockburn, from a decision rendered against him in Jamaica. Chal- 
mers's Opinions, ii. 177). 


verse the judgment and restore the money, still such agreement 
would not be binding on this Court, and the aggrieved party 
should pursue him who is faulty. 

From the last point made by Emery it would seem that some 
claim was made by Bollan that the representative of Leighton had 
entered into some agreement before the Privy Council for the 
restoration of the money. This may explain the meaning of the 
words " upon the consent of all parties " which appear in the first 
Royal Order. We are, however, left to conjecture as to this, since 
Bollan's "memorial & petition" is not among the papers now 
on the files. 

On the afternoon of the twenty-sixth of June the Court took 
the papers of the case into consideration, and rendered the following 
decision : — 

" A Memorial and Petition having been presented to this Court on 
Thursday la3t by William Bollan Gent., in behalf of William Leighton, 
Geut n setting forth at large an order of His Majesty in Council of the 
22 d of March last, and thereupon praying for an execution against John 
Frost in order to compel him to restore to the sd William Leighton the 
sum of one hundred and twenty five pounds eighteen shillings according 
to His Majesties said Order. 

4 'The Court now taking into their serious consideration the said 
Memorial & Petition together with the answer of Noah Emery Attorney 
at Law in behalf of the sd Jno Frost are of opinion, that they have no 
authority by any Law of this province, or usage of this Court to order 
such an execution ; and the provision made in the Royal Charter respect- 
ing appeals to his Majesty in Council dos not as they apprehend, warrant 
any such execution, but points to a method of another nature in all 
appeals to be made conformable to the sd Charter. This was, in effect 
the Judgmt of this Court when they sat in this County the last year, 
upon a motion made by the sd William Bollan in behalf of the sd 
William Leighton to the same purpose, upon an order of his Majesty in 
Council dated the 29th of April 1736; and the Justices of this Court 
now present, see no reason to depart from that opinion. As to the said 
John Frosts bringing on a review, or an action de novo, that so the 
said William Leighton may withdraw his former plea and plead the 
General Issue &c. By the Constitution of the Courts of Justice in this 
province, the action must begin first at the Inferiour Court, and so come 
to this Court by Appeal, and the Justices of this Court, when such 
Appeal comes regularly before them will unquestionably endeavour that 


Justice be done between the sd Leighton and Frost. And as to putting 
the Royal orders before mentioned upon the records of this Court, it 
appears by the Clerks minutes, that the Justices of this Court, receiving 
the first order, gave express direction for recording the same, and were 
surprised to find it was omitted, and they have now commanded that 
both the Royal Orders be forthwith recorded, and we shall take effectual 
care that the same be accordingly done. 

" In the name & by the order of Court 

1 'Samuel Tyley, Cler." 

With the sentence in the decision of the Court which reads, 
" The Justices of this Court now present, see no reason to depart 
from that opinion," the dramatic interest in this case ceases. Two 
orders of the King in Council proved no more convincing to the 
Court than one. The alternative was presented of acquiescence 
on the part of the Council or of attempting to punish the judges. 
The case has never attracted the attention of our historians ; we 
may therefore conclude that the Privy Council decided not to 
proceed against the judges. Perhaps they were satisfied with the 
reasoning of the Court. It seems to me obvious that the conclusion 
of the Court as to Shirley's plea was either accepted by the Privy 
Council as good law, or they were willing to abide by the opinions 
of the Courts of the Province upon questions of practice like this. 
The decision was recited in the first Royal Order without com- 
ment, and the attempt was made to procure for Leighton some 
way in which he could avoid it by pleading so that he might 
offer his facts in evidence. While it is true that the dramatic 
character of the story ceases with the unflinching attitude of the 
Court when the second order was presented, there are one or two 
more facts in the case to be gained from the archives without which 
the story would be incomplete. 

The decision of the Court was rendered on the twenty-sixth of 
June. The Inferior Court was to meet in York in July. A por- 
tion of the Royal Order was directed to that Court. Bollan there- 
fore wished to get possession of the original order so that he might 
submit it to the Inferior Court. His motion to that effect was 
granted upon his promise that he would return the order to 
the Superior Court for record. The entry in the docket goes 
on to state that he received the said order the twenty-sixth of 


June, 1739, that he might exhibit the same before the Inferior 
Court for the County of York at the next sitting, when motion was 
to be made by the said Leighton to change his plea according to 
his Majesty's Order aforesaid. This must have been a perfunctory 
performance on his part ; for with the case transferred to the higher 
Court and the judgment there fully satisfied, there would not seem 
to be any way in which the Court could have granted such a 
motion. The order was, however, produced at the July term of 
the Inferior Court, and read and ordered by the Court to be re- 
corded. Thus, practically, ended the case. Yet, once more, it 
raised its head. On the nineteenth of October, 1743, at Boston, 
the Justices of the Superior Court, having received a letter from 
Governor Shirley, complaining that the orders of the King in 
Council had never been carried into execution, gave order to 
the Clerk to prepare a draft of a summons or other process to 
notify the said John Frost, the party concerned, to show cause 
why the order of the King in Council, so far as it concerned him, 
had not been complied with, etc., and to lay the said draught before 
the Justices of the said Court, that so they might do what was 
proper thereupon. There is nothing to show that any further steps 
were taken. Even if there were, they would not be of interest to 
us. It will be noticed that the proposed process was to deal only 
with the question of Frost's obedience to the Royal Order. 

A discussion followed the reading of Mr. Davis's paper, 
in which Mr. Abner C. Goodell, Jr., Mr. William W. 
Goodwin, and others participated. 

Mr. Samuel Johnson called attention to a Decision of 
the Supreme Judicial Court of the Commonwealth affecting 
the Old South Society in Boston, 1 which was omitted from 
the printed series of Massachusetts Reports. 

On the back of the original paper, in the handwriting of 
Mr. Justice Ames, is this memorandum : — 
" Mr. Reporter. 

As this case is one merely of fact, there may be no occasion to publish 
the opinion in the printed volume. S. A." 

1 Cf. Massachusetts Reports, cvi. 479-189, 489-198 ; cxix. 1-28. 


The text of this Decision is as follows : — 

Commonfcoealtt) of $)a00acfm$ett& 



No. 858. Old South Society v. Crocker, 
No. 859. Crocker v. Old South Society. 

Suffolk. 29 March, 1876, 8 May, 1876. 
Present : Colt, Ames, Morton, Endicott, Devens, JJ. 
Absent or not sitting : Gray, C. J., Lord, J. 

Ames, J. Under the decision already given in this case, the only 
question remaining for consideration is whether the proposed sale is 
reasonably required for the accommodation of the Society as a whole, 
and whether it can be carried into effect " without subjecting the 
minority to au unreasonable sacrifice of interest or convenience, or in 
any way working any injustice to them." 119 Mass. 1. This question 
is brought before us upon an appeal from the decree of a single justice, 
with a full report of all the evidence taken at the hearing. 

It appears from the Report that in April, 1869, at a meeting of the 
pew proprietors, a vote was passed in contemplation of the purchase of 
a piece of land upon which a new house for public worship should at 
some time be erected. Under this and other subsequent votes a lot of 
land was purchased, and a Chapel and a Dwelling-house for the Minister 
were erected upon it. Since the great fire of November, 1872, the 
Society has wholly ceased to use the old Meeting-house as a place of 
public worship, and shortly after that date, by special authority con- 
ferred upon the corporation by Statute 1872, chap. 368, the building 
was leased to the United States for a post-office. And in April, 1873, 
it was voted that the new Chapel and Meeting-house should be i ' the 
regular place of meeting for the public worship of God." 

It is insisted on behalf of the Corporation that however convenient 
and well adapted to its contemplated use the lot of land may have been 
at the time of the original gift, it has now become unsuitable and incon- 
venient. From the manner in which, under the authority given by 
Statute of 1845, chap. [229], all of the land except the Meeting-house 
and the land under it has since been occupied, it has become substan- 
tially impossible to erect upon it a Dwelling-house for the Minister ; and 
the Chapel for the Sunday School is alleged to be inconveniently small 
and difficult of access. The place where the building stands has be- 
come one of the noisiest, busiest, and most crowded parts of the city. 



The changes which result from the growth of a city, and the extension 
of warehouses, shops, hotels, and other places of business, or of public 
amusement, into localities once occupied by the dwelling-houses of 
families, are recognized as reasons which are sufficient to justify a reli- 
gious society in the sale of its corporate property for the purpose of 
removing their place of worship to some better situation. In re New 
South Meeting House in Boston, 13 Allen, 497. Such a removal for 
such a cause is not a perversion of the trust upon which the property 
was held. In Sohier v. Trinity Church, 109 Mass. 1, a case in which 
real estate had been conveyed to a religious corporation " in trust to be 
used as a place of public worship," it was held that the Legislature 
might authorize the sale of the property in order to raise funds to build 
a new church upon another site which the corporation deemed more con- 
venient and agreeable. 

We do not find in the evidence reported any reason to doubt that the 
votes on the subject of the new lot of land and the new buildings were 
legally and honestly obtained. We find no proof of any fraud, or sur- 
prise, or want of notice. Their manifest purport is that the new place 
of worship was to be substituted for the old one, and that the old one 
was to be finally and entirely abandoned as their place of worship. We 
cannot suppose that they intended to maintain two distinct churches for 
two distiuct and separate congregations. Nothing of that kind is required 
by the terms of the original gift. 

Upon the question of the necessity or propriety of transferring their 
place of worship to the newly purchased land, and selling the old church 
edifice in order to pay the expense incurred in building the new one, the 
vote of the majority of the pewholders or members of the Society, 
although not decisive, is nevertheless a consideration entitled to great 
weight. It is an expression of the deliberate judgment of the trustees, 
who must be supposed to be well acquainted with the condition and 
necessities of the Society, whose integrity is unquestioned, and who are 
acting in promotion of what they suppose to be the true interest and 
wellbeing of the entire body. 

We see no reason in the report of the evidence for reversing the 
decision of the Judge who has reserved the case for our determination. 
It is in our judgment clearly proved that the old building had ceased to 
be a convenient and eligible place of worship for this society (as the 
recognized beneficiary under the trust created by Madam Norton) ; x that 
the attendance upon the services in that building had greatly fallen off ; 

1 The words in parentheses were inserted by Ames, J., without indicating 
where they properly belong. — George F. Tucker, Reporter of Decisions. 


that their numbers had declined, and that the prosperity and usefulness 
of the Society had been materially impaired in consequence of the disad- 
vantages incident to the local situation of their church edifice. (It is 
not needful to inquire whether the old building is capable of useful 
appropriation to some other description of religious use, or for some 
other assembly for purposes of public worship.) We are satisfied that 
the proposed change was reasonably required for the accommodation of 
the Society as a whole, that it does no injustice to the minority and 
does not subject them to any unreasonable sacrifice of interest or 

It is objected that the Petitioners ought not to gain any advantage 
in this litigation, by having built the new church at so heavy an expense, 
and thereby creating the necessity for raising a large amount of money 
from the trust property. It is true that they cannot thereby gain any 
advantage in court, but the view which we have taken of the matter does 
not depend upon any such consideration. We have endeavored to con- 
sider the question exactly as we should if the new lot of land had not 
been bought and the new church had not been built, and as if the propo- 
sition before us were merely whether the old building should be sold in 
order to build another with the proceeds, in another part of the city. It 
is also objected that the purpose of the sale is to build up a fund from 
the income of which the current expenses of the Society are to be paid. 
But we do not so consider it. It is, as already described, a sale of a 
church not adapted to the wants and circumstances of the Society, in 
order to build another better suited to their needs. 

Whatever regrets therefore may be felt at the probable removal of a 
building surrounded by so many patriotic and historical associations, we 
are obliged to consider the case, solely with reference to the rights and 
interests of the immediate parties to this litigation. The rules which 
govern our decision must be exactly the same as if no special or peculiar 
sentiment of a merely patriotic character were associated with the build- 
ing. In that aspect of the case, we see no reason for refusing the prayer 
of the petition. 

Decree for plaintiff in No. 858. Bill dismissed in No. 859. 

Mr. Appleton P. C. Griffin read the following paper 
dealing with the domestic and official relations which existed 
between Benjamin Franklin and John Foxcroft : — 

The query, " Who was the Mother of Franklin's Son ? " has for 
a long time occupied unavailingly the investigations of the biog- 
raphers of Franklin ; but it is only recently that another problem 


in Franklin's family history has presented itself for the researches 
of the curious. The letter, a copy of which I now communicate 
to the Society, is very brief, but presents significant material upon 
the career of Franklin, with a sidelight on our Postal history. 

As introductory to the reading of the letter, perhaps I cannot do 
better than to refer to the following marriage notice : — 

" Last Thursday Evening, Mr. Richard Bache, of this City, Mer- 
chant, was married to Miss Sally Franklin, the only Daughter of the 
celebrated Doctor Franklin, a young lady of distinguished Merit. The 
next Day all the Shipping in the Harbour displayed their Colours on the 
happy Occasion." l 

It will be observed that Miss Sally Franklin is called " the only 
daughter of the celebrated Doctor Franklin." Our letter intro- 
duces a new claimant to the honor of holding the title of " daughter 
of the celebrated Doctor Franklin." 

PHiLADf feb? 2? 1772 
Dear Sir 

I have the happiness to acquaint you that your Daughter was safely 
bro! to Bed the 20 l . h ult° and presented me w th a sweet little Girl, they 
are both in good spirits and are likely to do very well. 

I was seized with a Giddiness in my head the Day before yesterday 
w ch alarms me a good Deal as I had 20 0I of Blood taken from me and 
took Physick w c . h does not seem in the least to have relieved me. 

I am hardly able to write this M rs F joins me in best affections to 
y r self and Comp t9 to M rs Stevenson & M r & M r8 Huson. 2 
I am D r Si r 

Y rs affectionately John Foxcroft 

M r . s Franklin M rB Bache little Ben, y e Family at Burlington are all 
well I had a Letter from y c Gov!" yesterday. 

J. F. 

To Benjamin Franklin Esq r 

at M ,s Stevensons in Craven Street 

J : Free : Foxcroft )- London 

To this may be added the fact, that in Bigelow's " Franklin " 
(V. 202) there is a letter from Franklin to Foxcroft which has a 

1 Pennsylvania Chronicle (newspaper), No. 41, from Monday, October 26th, 
to Monday, November 2d, 1707. 

2 Franklin boarded for fifteen years with Mrs. Margaret Stevenson, whose 
daughter Mary married Dr. William Ilewson, F. R. S. (Bigelow's Complete 
Works of Benjamin Franklin (edition of 1SS7, 1888), ii. 522, note.) 


closing clause the import of which has hitherto escaped notice, 
and which confirms the fact of the relationship that is conclusively 
stated in the letter before us. Franklin there says : " I find by 
yours to Mr. Todd that you expected soon another little one. God 
send my daughter a good time, and you a good boy." 

In Sabine's Biographical Sketches of Loyalists of the American 
Revolution (I. 434) there is printed a letter from Foxcroft to 
Tuthill Hubbart, 1 Postmaster at Boston, in which he says Mrs. 
Foxcroft and " my little girls are well." This shows that Frank- 
lin's prayer — " God send my daughter a good time, and you a 
good boy" — was not fulfilled as to the sex of the offspring. John 
Foxcroft, the writer of this epistle, was Deputy Postmaster-General, 
or, as sometimes called, " Joint Postmaster-General" with Franklin, 
from 1761 till the opening of the Revolution. The printed materials 
for his biography are scant ; his name does not appear in the Cyclo- 
pedia of American Biography, and there is no printed history of his 
family. The following items, all from the Gentleman's Magazine, 
are the only data concerning him which I have thus far collected : — 

1761. Mr. Foxcroft of William sburgh, appointed joint Postmaster 
General of America with Benjamin Franklin LLD. 

1770, August 2. [Married] John Foxcroft, Esq; deputy Postmaster 
general of North-America — to Miss Osgood, King's-Street, St. James's. 

1790, Mar. 5. [Died] At New-York, John Foxcroft, esq. agent for 
the British packets there. The late Dr. Franklin and he were appointed 
joint postmasters-general of that province ; which office, during the 
time of the American War, was abolished. 

In regard to the lady who was Franklin's daughter and Foxcroft's 
wife, we have no information beyond what is afforded by this letter 
and the marriage notice, except that I am told by a correspondent 
that she was married as Miss Mary Osgood. It is possible that 
she is referred to in a tract by Hugh Williamson, called " What 
is sauce for the goose is also sauce for the gander," published at 
Philadelphia in 1764. In this virulent work, directed against 
Franklin, there is an epitaph which the writer constructed for his 
opponent. 2 

1 Tuthill Hubbart, who succeeded James Franklin, was Postmaster till the 
Revolution ; was Selectman of Boston, 1781-1784 ; and died, on the site of 
Sears's Building, 17 January, 1808, aged 88. 

2 " An Epitaph &c To the much esteem'd Memory of B F 

Esq,' L. L. D. * * * Possessed of many lucrative Offices Procured to him by 


Paul Leicester Ford, who brought this epitaph to notice in his 
skit, " Who was the Mother of Franklin's Son ? " finds in " The 
Foster Mother of his last Offspring Who did his dirty Work " con- 
tributory evidence to the solution of his query. The " two Angelic 
Females, whom Barbara also served" he does not undertake to 
identify. We are perhaps not going too far astray in hazarding 
the conjecture that this duet of " angelic females " was composed 
of Sally Franklin, afterwards Mrs. Bache, and Mary Osgood, who 
became Mrs. John Foxcroft. 

An interesting feature of the letter under consideration is the 
form of the frank, which reads, " J. Free Foxcroft." It will be 
remembered that the patriots used to find cheer and encourage- 
ment in the franking form used by Franklin, " B. Free Franklin," 
in which they read an injunction from the great philosopher to 
" Be free." It would appear, however, from Foxcroft's use of the 
same form, that it was a device to prevent franking by unauthor- 
ized persons. The fact that so little has got into print about a 
man like Foxcroft, who performed important public service in 
the pre-Revolutionary days, shows that there is much to be done 
to set forth clearly our annals. 

It may not be amiss to give here a picture of the Franklin 
menage in 1755, drawn from an apparently impartial source. In 
the Diary of Daniel Fisher 2 we find the following. After relating 
the circumstances attending his entering into Franklin's employ- 
ment as a clerk, Fisher says : — 

"Mr. Soumien 2 had often informed me of great uneasiness and dissat- 
isfaction in Mr. Franklin's family in a manner no way pleasing to me and 
which in truth I was unwilling to credit, but as Mrs. Franklin and I, of 
late, began to be Friendly and sociable, I discerned too great grounds 

the Interest of Men Whom he infamously treated, And receiving enormous 
Sums from this Province, For Services He never performed After betraying it 
to Party and Contention, He lived, as to the Appearance of Wealth In Moderate 
Circumstances. His principal Estate, seeming to consist In his Hand Maid 
Barbara A most valuable Slave, The Foster Mother of his last Offspring Who 
did his dirty Work And in two Angelic Females, whom Barbara also served As 
Kitchen Wench and Gold Finder. But alas the Loss ! Providence for wise 
tho' secret Ends Lately deprived him of the Mother of Excellency." 

1 Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography for 1893, xvii. 256. 

2 Samuel Soumien was a silversmith and lived only a few doors from the 
Franklins in Philadelphia. 

a Governor William Franklin. 


for Mr. Soumien's Keflections, arising solely from turbulence and jeal- 
ousy and pride of her disposition. She suspecting Mr. Franklin for hav- 
ing too great an esteem for his son in prejudice of herself and daughter, 
a young woman of about 12 or 13 years of age, for whom it was visible 
Mr. Franklin had no less esteem than for his son. Young Mr. Franklin, 
I have often seen pass to and from his father's apartment upon Busi- 
ness (for he does not eat, drink or sleep in the house) without least 
compliment between Mr. [sic: ?Mrs.] Franklin and him or any sort of 
notice taken of each other, till one Day as I was sitting with her in the 
passage when the young Gentleman came by she exclaimed to me (he 
not hearing) : ' Mr. Fisher, there goes the greatest Villain upon 
Earth.' This greatly confounded and perplexed me, but did not 
hinder her from pursuing her Invections in the foulest terms I ever 
heard from a Gentlewoman. What to say or do I could not tell, till 
luckily a neighbor of her acquaintance coming in I made my escape." 

Messrs. Andrew Cunningham Wheelwright, of Cohas- 
set, and Albert Matthews and Charles Armstrong Snow, 
both of Boston, were elected Kesident Members. 



THE Annual Meeting was held at the Exchange Club, 
corner of Milk and Batterymarch Streets, Boston, on 
Saturday, 21 November, 1896, at half-past five o'clock in 
the afternoon, the President, Benjamin Apthorp Gould, 
LL.D., in the chair. 

The Records of the last Stated Meeting were read and 

Dr. Gould then addressed the Society as follows : — 

Gentlemen of The Colonial Society of Massachusetts : 

At this, our fourth Annual Meeting it is once more my privilege 
to exchange congratulations with you upon the continued and 
marked progress of our Society. After successfully maintaining 
its position during an extended period of depression throughout 
the community, and one which under other circumstances might 
well have been disheartening, it has held its influence and con- 
tinued its activity in a marked degree, and justified the expecta- 
tions of its Founders and well-wishers. It has aided efficiently in 
carrying out the purposes designated in its Charter, by propagating 
knowledge of the lives and deeds of our Colonial ancestors ; by 
encouraging individual research into the part taken by our fore- 
fathers in the building of our Nation; by promoting intelligent 
discussion of events in which the people of our Commonwealth 
have been concerned, in> order that justice may be done to partici- 
pants and false claims silenced ; and by inspiring among our mem- 
bers a spirit of fellowship based upon a proper appreciation of our 
common ancestry. With the return, already manifest, of more 
favorable conditions, the auguries of an increased usefulness for 
our Society are becoming brighter still. 

The Report of your Council contains a brief summary of the 
year's work and experience. The sad features, which we can 

1896.] REPORT OF THE COUNCIL. . 273 

rarely expect to escape, are, it is true, not wanting, and some have 
been taken away from us from whose support and assistance we 
hoped much. In addition to the loss from our number of the three 
honored and useful members whose removal we were called upon 
to deplore during the lapse of less than a single month at the 
beginning of the year, and whose good deeds are soon to be espe- 
cially commemorated in our records, we mourn for two others 
whose absence from amoiig us has left a strange void for many 
classes of our fellow-citizens. One was a man of large affairs and 
commercial influence, whose ancestry was intimately connected 
with the earliest history and institutions of the Massachusetts 
Colony, and whose interest in our work was intense and keen; 
the other, although comparatively young, was a statesman, beloved 
and honored by men of all parties, whose personal influence was 
unsurpassed by that of any public man among us. Few men could 
be more different than they, — the large financier, who lived a 
retiring but beneficent life, full of judicious counsel and unos- 
tentatious charities, and the brilliant young politician whose ex- 
ample did much to redeem the so frequent, yet perhaps not 
unnatural, perversion of that term in our land. Both were men 
of high integrity, who could ill be spared from our fellowship. 

But we will turn, at present, from sad reminiscences, and look 
toward the dawn. Our outlook is full of promise as well as of 

The Annual Report of the Council was presented and 
read by Mr. Edward Wheelwright. 


It is provided by the By-Laws that, at the Annual Meeting, the 
Council " shall make an Annual Report, which shall include a de- 
tailed statement of the doings of the Society during the preceding 
year." In compliance with that requirement, the following Report 
is respectfully submitted : — 

Since the last Annual Meeting, a report of which is already in 
type and in the hands of the Members, the usual number of 
Stated Meetings of the Society has been held, all of them in the 
Hall of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, in Boston. 



For the hospitality thus kindly accorded to us in our present 
houseless and homeless condition, the Society is deeply grateful. 

The Stated Meetings of the Society were well attended, the 
Annual Meeting bringing together no less than forty-eight mem- 
bers. There were read before these meetings four important papers 
of considerable length by four different members, while about 
twenty shorter communications were made by fifteen members. 

The Society has lost five members by death during the year : — 

Martin Brimmer, 
Edward Wigglesworth, 
Daniel Denison Slade, 
William Gordon Weld, 
William Eustis Russell. 

The Council has held during the year six Stated Meetings ; and 
as empowered by Chapter XL, Article 3, of the By-Laws, it has 
appointed the following Committees : — 

On Finance — The Treasurer, Mr. Henry Winchester Cunningham, and 

Dr. Henry Parker Quincy. 
Of Publication — Messrs. Andrew McFarland Davis, Henry Williams, 

John Noble, Edward Griffin Porter, and George Lyman Kittredge. 
On Printing — Messrs. Henry Herbert Edes and Edward Wheelwright. 

It has also appointed Mr. Henry Herbert Edes to write the 
Memoir of the Hon. James Walker Austin, in place of Mr. Abner 
Cheney Goodell, Jr., previously appointed to that service, but 
whose engagements precluded his acceptance; the Hon. George 
Silsbee Hale, to write a Memoir of the Hon. Martin Brimmer ; Dr. 
Henry Parker Quincy, one of Dr. Wigglesworth ; Edward Wheel- 
wright, one of Dr. Slade; Dr. Joseph Henry Allen, one of Mr. 
William Gordon Weld ; and Dr. Charles Carroll Everett, one of 
Governor Russell. 

The following named gentlemen have accepted membership in 
the Society during the year: — 

Messrs. Lindsay Swift, 

Charles Frank Mason, 

Appleton Prentiss Clark Griffin, 

Richard Middlecott Saltonstall, 

Albert Matthews, 

Andrew Cunningham Wheelwright, 

Charles Armstrong Snow. 


An event of capital importance in the history of the year has 
been the publication of the first volume of our Transactions. The 
admirable manner in which the Committee of Publication have 
accomplished their task deserves the warmest thanks of the 

The two great needs of the Society, ably dwelt upon in previous 
Reports, are still "a Publication Fund and a place of abode." 
The nucleus of such a Fund has, indeed, been already laid during 
the time of financial depression from which the country is now 
emerging, and it is confidently hoped that with the return of pros- 
perity our members will make an earnest effort to place the Society 
on a firm financial basis. By the Report of the Treasurer it will 
appear that the Publication Fund now amounts to $424.96. The 
income of so small a sum as this is, of course, entirely inadequate 
to defray the cost of our Publications, and until largely increased 
the annual deficiency must be supplied, as in the past, by voluntary 
contributions from individual members. 

There also exists a General Fund, formed from the sums paid 
into the Treasury from time to time by members for Admission 
Fees and in commutation of their Annual Assessments. This 
Fund now amounts to $1,774.98, the income only of which is 
available for the current expenses of the Society. It would be 
long before the income of this Fund, at its present rate of increase, 
would suffice for even the hire of the narrowest quarters as "a 
place of abode." How to increase the capital of both these Funds 
is a question worthy of the most careful consideration of the Society ; 
and it is hoped that some action looking to this end may be taken 
at an early day. 

The Treasurer presented his Annual Report, as follows : 


The first Article of Chapter VIII. of the By-Laws requires that 
the Treasurer shall submit, at the Annual Meeting of the Society, 
a statement of all his official doings for the preceding year, of the 
amount and condition of all the property of the Society intrusted 
to him, and of the character of the investments. In compliance 
therewith, the following Report is respectfully submitted : — 


The pressing need of the Society for a substantial enlargement 
of its permanent Funds has been already referred to in the Report 
of the Council, and it remains for your Treasurer merely to empha- 
size that need by calling the Society's attention to the fact that 
the increase during the past year has amounted to only $647.99. 
But, although the Funds amount to $2,200 only, they are safely 
invested in gold mortgages on improved city property with very 
large equities, and yield 5|% net. These investments are as 
follows : — 

$500 in a 6% mortgage, payable principal and interest in gold coin, 

on improved Real Estate in Cambridge ; 
1000 in a 5% Parti- Mortgage Receipt (No. 149) of the Convey- 
ancers Title Insurance Company, due 16 April, 1899, and 
payable principal and interest in gold coin, on improved 
Real Estate in Boston ; 
650 in a 5% mortgage, payable principal and interest in gold 
coin, on improved Real Estate in Boston. 
49.94 deposited in the Charlestown Five Cents Savings Bank. 

The following is an abstract of the Accounts for the past twelve 
months, and a Trial Balance of the books on 21 November, 1896 : 



Balance 15 November, 1895 $36.50 

Admission Fees $70.00 

Annual Assessments 850.00 

Commutations of the Annual Assessment from Five 

Members 500.00 

Interest 83.41 

Sales of the Society's Publications 35.00 

Henry H. Edes, temporary loan 100.00 

Withdrawn from Charlestown Five Cents Savings Bank . 555.42 

Contributions from three members 100.00 2,293.83 

" $2,330.38 


University Press, Printing $558.08 

Clerical Service 29.50 

C. S. Hathaway, mounting Photographs and Autographs 

of Members for the Society's Album 6.25 

Miscellaneous incidentals 410.05 

Henry II. Edes, temporary loan, paid 100.00 $1,1] 3.78 


Amount carried forward $1,113.78 

Deposited in Charlestown Five Cents Savings Bank : Com- 
mutations, Admission Fees, and Interest belonging to 
the permanent Funds . . . . $553.41 

Mortgage on improved real estate No. 5 Louisiana Place, 
East Boston, recently sold by auction for $1,305, dated 
21 September, 1896, three years at 5%, principal and 
interest payable in gold coin 650,00 

Interest in adjustment 5.42 1,208.83 

Balance on deposit in Third National Bank of Boston, 20 

November, 1896 7.72 



Cash $7.72 

Mortgages $2,150.00 

Charlestown Five Cents Savings Bank ....... 49.94 2,199.94 

$2,20 7.66 


Income $7.72 

Publication Fund $424.96 

General Fund 1,774.98 2,199.94 

$2,207 .66 

Henry H. Edes, 

Boston, 21 November, 1896. 

Mr. David Rice Whitney read the following Report of 
the Auditing Committee : — 


The undersigned, a Committee appointed to examine the ac- 
counts of the Treasurer of The Colonial Society of Massachusetts 
for the year ending 21 November, 1896, have attended to that duty, 
and report that they find them correctly kept and properly 
vouched ; and that proper evidence of the investments and of the 
balance of cash on hand has been shown to us. 

. . D. R. Whitney, 

Samuel Johnson, 

Boston, 21 November, 1896. 



The several Reports were accepted, and referred to the 
Committee of Publication. 

On motion of Mr. Whitney, it was — 

Voted, That the Chair appoint a Committee of five members with full 
powers to consider the subject of increasing the Permanent Funds of the 
Society, whereby provision may be made for an annual income sufficient 
to defray the cost of the Society's Publications, and to take such further 
action as they may deem expedient. 

Mr. James Bradley Thayer, Chairman of the Nomi- 
nating Committee, presented the following list of candidates 
for officers for the ensuing year : — 















A ballot was then taken, and the above-named gentle- 
men were unanimously elected. 

1896.] ANNUAL DINNEE. 279 

After the dissolution of the meeting, dinner was served. 
Dr. Gould took the chair, and the Divine blessing was 
invoked by Bishop Lawrence. Mr. James B. Thayer 
addressed the Society, and thenceforward, at the request 
of Dr. Gould, relieved him in the performance of the 
duties of Presiding Officer. Speeches were also made 
by Mr. James Mills Peirce, the Hon. Charles W. 
Clifford, Mr. Abner C. Goodell, Jr., Mr. George Lyman 
Kittredge, Mr. S. Lothrop Thorndike, and the Hon. 
Darwin E. Ware. 


28 November, 1896. 

A Special Meeting of the Council was held on Saturday, 
28 November, 1896, at half-past ten o'clock in the fore- 
noon to take action upon the death of the late President of 
the Society, Benjamin Apthoep Gould, LL.D., who died on 
Thursday evening. 

Present, Messrs. Henry Winchester Cunningham, Andrew Mc- 
Farland Davis, Henry Herbert Edes, Charles Carroll Everett, 
John Lowell, and Edward Wheelwright. 

The First Vice-President, the Hon. John Lowell, occupied 
the chair. 

The following is an extract from the Records of the Meeting : — 

We, the Council of The Colonial Society of Massachusetts, have heen 
convened in consequence of the mournful intelligence of the sudden 
death of our honored President. Our last memory of him in connec- 
tion with the Society brings him before us, full of life and happiness, 
joining in the laughter brought forth by the wit of the speakers at our 
Annual Dinner, and manifesting a zeal and activity on that occasion 
which gave promise of the continuance for many years of that active 
interest in our affairs which has always been an inspiration to those 
who have been associated with him in this work. The shock which 
this great calamity has occasioned to the community will nowhere be felt 
with more intensity than within our own ranks. To the world he was 
the distinguished leader in the particular branch of Science in which 
he had made his fame. His career was rounded out with recognition at 
home and abroad which would have satisfied the most insatiable appe- 
tite for honors. His was the most conspicuous figure among the men 
of Science in this country. 

In the formation of this Society, of which he has been the President 
from the day of its foundation, his influence was conspicuous, and the 
strength of his honorable name was a magnet which attracted to our 
membership. For these reasons the loss which we feel has a personal 
character. It is not only our President but our friend that we mourn. 

In the midst of the enormous amount of professional work with which 
he was ever oppressed, he found time to prepare and publish an elaborate 


genealogy of the Gould family. The preparation of this work led to a 
deep interest on his part in the labors of men who were engaged in the 
study of the early history of this country, and was probably the under- 
lying cause of his connection with the Genealogical Society, the Amer- 
ican Antiquarian Society, and with this Society, in the creation of which 
he had so much to do. This interest was profound and constant, and 
his erudition upon the subject of the early settlers of this community 
was a source of surprise to those who knew him only as a scientific 

He was a delightful companion, being endowed with conversational 
gifts of rare quality. He was ever ready with fitting anecdote, apt 
quotation, or witty rejoinder. His wide experience in different coun- 
tries furnished him with a fund of information, from which he would 
upon occasion draw, for the delight and benefit of his friends. 

He was fond of poetry, and especially of the poems of Holmes. 
Many of these he knew by heart, and when in the mood would often 
cap a sentiment with a quotation from them. He was strong in his 
friendships and strong in his dislikes. It is seldom that men of his 
years maintain so many personal alliances contracted in their boyhood 
as did he. The rupture of the ties which bound him to these com- 
panions of his life, towards whom he ever maintained a tender, gener- 
ous, and loyal friendship, will be keenly felt. His loss reaches us as 
individuals, and is a calamity to this Society. He watched our progress 
with jealous interest. He took pride in our successes, and was im- 
patient that our affairs did not more rapidly assume a shape of assured 
permanency. In losing him we may well ask ourselves where shall we 
turn ? 

Resolved: That the foregoing be spread upon the Minutes of the 
Council ; that the Council tender their heartfelt sympathy to the family 
of their late President, and that the Council will, in a body, attend the 
funeral of this illustrious man of science, this faithful, zealous Presi- 
dent, this loyal, affectionate friend, this charming companion, this 
many-sided man. 

Voted: That the Stated Meeting of the Society in December be a 
Memorial Meeting for our late President, and that the Chair appoint a 
Committee of five to prepare suitable Resolutions and to arrange for the 
meeting. 1 

1 The names of the gentlemen who constituted this Committee are given in 
connection with the proceedings of the December Meeting of the Society. 




A Stated Meeting of the Society was held in the Hall 
of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, on 
Wednesday, 16 December, 1896, at three o'clock in the 

It had been determined by the Council that the exercises 
at this Meeting should be in the nature of a Memorial in 
honor of the late President of the Society, Dr. Benjamin 
Apthorp Gould, and a Committee 1 had been appointed by 
the Council to prepare suitable Resolutions for adoption on 
this occasion. A furious snow-storm raged at the time of 
the assembling of the Society, and prevented the attendance 
of Vice-President the Hon. John Lowell, who had signified 
his intention to be present and to say a few words in 
memory of Dr. Gould. Vice-President William Watson 
Goodwin was absent in Europe. 

Mr. Samuel Wells was called to the chair. 

After the Record of the Annual Meeting had been read, 
Mr. Thomas Minns and Charles Goddard Weld, M.D., 
were elected Resident Members. 

The Corresponding Secretary announced the gift to the 
Society by Mr. Albert Matthews of a fac-simile reproduc- 
tion of Bradford's History of Plymouth Plantation, for which 
the thanks of the Society were returned. 

Mr. Wells then called upon the Committee on Resolu- 
tions to submit their Report. 

1 The Committee was composed of Messrs. George S. Hale, George M. Lane, 
Edward Wheelwright, Seth C. Chandler, and S. Lothrop Thorndike. 


The Hon. George S. Hale, Chairman of the Committee, 
then read the Resolutions, prefacing them with the follow- 
ing remark : — 

The Committee have the honor of submitting to the meeting 
what I may designate (because I had no share in their composition) 
a very excellent series of Resolutions, which I will now read : — 

The Members of The Colonial Society of Massachusetts desire to 
place upon its records some expression of their sorrow on the 
occasion of the death of its President, Dr. Benjamin Apthorp 
Gould, on Thursday, the twenty-sixth day of November last. 

This grievous loss is the severest blow that could have come 
upon our Society. In joining those who first organized the Society 
and in accepting the office of its first President, Dr. Gould brought 
to it the support and distinction of a name known throughout the 
world as a leader in his chosen science. To this he added a 
hearty interest in the objects of this Society, and a faithful atten- 
tion to the duties of the office which he had accepted. From his 
earliest youth, Dr. Gould was a remarkable and interesting person. 
Happily born and bred, he counted always among his friends and 
intimates some of the ablest men of his time, and he was sought 
after, as a member, by learned societies in many countries. Such 
distinctions were the more honorable to him as coming to a man 
of an unusually out-spoken and even aggressive independence of 
character and thought, never afraid to speak his mind and never 
to be attacked with impunity. 

Dr. Gould loved the old habits and traditions of life and thought 
and religious faith and practice in which he had been brought up, 
and was always ready to bear testimony, on these subjects, to the 
faith that was in him. He had a wide range of acquaintances, and 
liked to keep up his association with many varieties of men. For 
the closer relations of friendship he had a great capacity, and it 
increased as life went on. He had suffered grievously in his early 
professional life from calumny and injustice, and afterward from 
the saddest bereavements in his home. But he kept steadily on at 
his great tasks until the latest hours of his life ; and now, what can 
be said of few men may be said of him, — that when death came 
to him all the work which he had laid out to do had been in sub- 


stance accomplished. He had, indeed, expressed a wish to live 
until his book upon the Stars of the Southern Hemisphere, for 
which he had collected material in South America, could be fin- 
ished. This was not granted him, but he had fully prepared nearly 
all the book, and had left it in such a shape as to be readily com- 
pleted by his faithful and devoted assistants. In recent years, his 
house was growing lonely, as his children grew up, and were mar- 
ried or called away to their own work in life ; but his friends al- 
ways found there the same hearty and delightful welcome. The 
experiences of life had not embittered him ; they seemed, rather, 
to have softened him, and to have added to his old, engaging 
qualities of wit, hospitality of thought, and hearty sympathy, a still 
wider range of appreciation and kindly and charitable judgment 
His name will be cherished by this Society with gratitude and 

Mr. James Bradley Thayer then spoke as follows : — 

Others will speak of Dr. Gould's great achievements in science, 
of his remarkable intellectual powers, and his distinguished place 
among the men of his time. 

I have only a very few words to say, mainly of Dr. Gould as a 
friend. Even so, I have little right to speak, as compared with 
those intimate and life-long companions of his who are here with 
us this afternoon. But I had grown to be very much attached to 
him, and am thankful to say a word or two. 

Long before I knew him, I remember seeing him on the streets 
of Cambridge, while I was in college. At that time he was known 
to us undergraduates as one of that brilliant company of men, 
including the young Professors Child and Lane, who led a cheerful 
and hilarious life together at what was called " Clover Den," in 
Follen Street. I have a picture in my mind of his striking figure, 
vigorous and alert, as he walked along the streets gayly conversing 
with his friends. But it was not until his return from South 
America that I personally knew him. I had then the pleasure of 
sharing in the tribute that was paid to him, in May, 1885, when he 
was welcomed back to Boston at a dinner by his friends. He set 
up his house at Cambridge, and since then I have known him as a 
neighbor, and had come to love him as a friend. 


The Resolutions speak of his great capacity for friendship. That 
seems to me particularly just and true. There was something very 
unusual about the cordiality of his greeting, and the warmth and 
cheer of the friendly glow that he always brought with him. He 
was full of sympathy and considerate attention, and knew well all 
those little kindly arts that minister to the happiness of a friend. 
You valued the more his kindness when you perceived how stead- 
fast and stanch his regard was for his classmates and all his older 
intimates. And then his wit was so brilliant, and the play of his 
faculties so keen and quick ! And under it all there was a serious 
and thoughtful mind, interested in all sorts of subjects, so that 
good and worthy conversation never failed. Of his lighter talk I 
remember a little instance that happened some years ago, a trivial 
little matter, to be sure, but it was characteristic of him, and you 
will pardon my telling it. I had come upon a Spanish sentence 
somewhere of which I wanted to get the exact meaning, and I went 
over to see Dr. Gould. I said to him that I had guessed that his 
long residence in South America would have made Spanish very 
familiar to him. He looked at the sentence, and told me at once 
what I wished to know. " Oh yes," he added, " for fifteen years I 
talked in Spanish ; and all I wrote was in Spanish ; — Spanish," he 
gravely added, after a pause, " and Arabic." I was impressed by 
that. After a moment I said, " I had n't known that you were so 
familiar with Arabic." " Yes, indeed," he said; "why, I pub- 
lished several quarto volumes," pointing to a bookshelf, " almost 
wholly in Arabic. Look at them ! " I went to the books, 
opened one of them, and saw page after page of tabulated Arabic 
numerals ! 

At our Annual Dinner, on the Saturday before his death, he 
asked me to drive in with him from Cambridge. He was in ex- 
cellent spirits. As we were driving out, and had nearly reached 
the new Harvard Bridge, he pointed up to a lighted window 
on the left. " There 's Mary," he said gayly, referring to his 
daughter, Mrs. Thorndike ; " I 'm coming in to dine with her on 
Thanksgiving." It was that affectionate errand on which he was 
just starting, on the following Thursday, when the end came. A 
happy end it was for him, — painless, we may believe, and short, and 
leaving his fame at its highest. But to many of us, his friends, 
and to our Society, it brings one of the severest of losses. 


At the conclusion of Professor Thayer's remarks, Mr. 
Philip II. Sears addressed the Society in the following 
language : — 

Mr. Chairman, — I did not expect to speak on this occasion 
until yesterday afternoon, and therefore I have not written any- 
thing, and have only hastily run over my early recollections of my 
classmate Gould, and I shall have to present them here very much 
as they have come up in my own mind, without any attempt at 
proper arrangement. 

I shall not speak of his scientific achievements, because I think 
that office more properly belongs to some others who are here, but 
shall rather speak of him as a classmate, and of what I have known 
of him ever since our college days in consequence of this relation 
to him. 

I never saw Dr. Gould until I met him in 1840 in the recita- 
tion-rooms at Cambridge. The freshman class of that day was, 
in Latin and Greek, divided into three divisions, not alphabeti- 
cally, but according to the rank in which each one had entered 
college through the examination for admission. I found myself 
in the same division with Dr. Gould and with our classmate, 
Mr. Hale, and in consequence I became better acquainted with 
Gould and with others in that division than with the majority of 
the class. 

Very soon after the commencement of our course, he invited me 
to dine with him on Saturday at his father's house in Winthrop 
Place in Boston. I accepted the invitation, and afterward I dined 
with him on Saturdays many times in the freshman and sophomore 
years. At that time we always walked from Cambridge to Boston 
and back from Boston to Cambridge, and had much conversation 
on the way. I recollect that on our way, in one of the earliest 
of these walks, to my great astonishment he recited whole pages 
from Homer and from Virgil, and whole odes of Horace and scenes 
from Terence. It showed a most remarkable memory, which was, 
I think, one of his great intellectual traits. He retained through 
life things that he had learned before he was admitted to college, 
and on many occasions, especially those of a festive character, he 
would make exceedingly apt quotations from classic authors. This 
retentive memory served him, too, in his scientific papers afterward. 


I wish also to remark in this connection that he had then (and I 
think he retained it through life) a great predilection for the 
classics and a great admiration and love for the classic authors. 
I do not know that he read them much afterward, but he was ready 
to quote from them at all times in later life. 

Another thing that occurred also in those early walks, showing 
a trait of his character, was the expression of a strong ambition to 
distinguish himself. I recollect that on one occasion he said if he 
could gain the reputation and distinction of Edward Everett, he 
should be ready to sacrifice his life instantly. That, at the time, 
was a personal ambition, but later it gave place to and became 
merged in a desire to do something worthy of a man in life, 
to accomplish something that would characterize properly the 
dignity of a man, and especially to advance his favorite science 
of astronomy. Afterward the love of this science took the 
place of all personal ambition, and later his love of astronomy 
became merged in a broader feeling even than that. This 
feeling was, through the enlargement of astronomical knowledge, 
to advance the intellectual power and dignity and higher welfare 
of man. 

In those days I think he had but little taste, and I should not 
say that he had any peculiar talent, for mathematics, — I mean the 
mathematical talent properly so called, because I remember that 
he now and then " deaded," as so many others did, and Professor 
Peirce would write on his book "Take again." In the earlier 
part of his college course the classics were his favorite study. I 
never knew exactly what it was that caused the change in his 
special studies. His earliest part, which was in the junior year, 
was a Greek version, Pericles the Athenian being the subject ; and I 
think it was after the middle of the junior year that he first began 
to devote himself almost completely to mathematics and to science. 
Perhaps this was done by the advice of Professor Peirce — I think 
that is very probable, because Professor Peirce advised others of us 
to make mathematics our special sphere in life. There were in 
the class seven who took the course of pure mathematics through- 
out the whole four years of college life. General Wild was one, 
and Joseph Peabody was another; and another was Charles A. 
Whitcomb ; I was one, and Dr. Gould was one. Professor Peirce, 
I know, advised me to make mathematics my business in life, but I 


declined ; I presume he advised Gould in the same way. But what, 
I think, was largely the cause of his change of studies was his 
admiration for the meetings and proceedings of the British Associa- 
tion for the Advancement of Science. In his junior year he read 
the Proceedings of that Society, and was filled with admiration 
for what the Society did and for the men who composed it, and 
often spoke of them. His part at the beginning of the senior 
year was on that subject, — the British Association for the 
Advancement of Science. Its preparation awoke in him a strong 
enthusiasm that way, and after the beginning of the senior year 
he gave himself almost completely to the study of mathematics 
and science. 

He developed at that time a capacity for persistent and strenuous 
application to these studies which was the secret of his success in 
life. I have visited his room and found him holding his aching 
head in his hands, yet absorbed in study and working with all his 
might. It was during the senior year that he especially developed 
this power of long-continued application. It was the same trait 
to which, you will remember, Newton ascribed his discoveries, — 
the power of patient thought. This peculiarity Dr. Gould had, 
and it was this that enabled him to achieve what he did later 
in life. 

I often visited his room, as he often came to mine ; and I want 
to mention by the way a characteristic thing that came from 
another of the class, who was at that time a room-mate of Dr. 
Gould. That was Francis Parkman. I think on the first visit 
that I made to his room I talked over with Parkman the books 
that we had read, and among other things I told him that I had 
not then read all of Scott's novels, and he said, " Oh, how I envy 
you the pleasure you are destined to have ! " He had read them 
all, and said there was no end to the enjoyment to be had in 
reading Scott's novels. 

Another trait in Dr. Gould's character, which has been referred 
to by Professor Thayer, and which was one of the most remark- 
able things about him, was the warmth and constancy of his friend* 
ships. This is a thing in which the Class of '44 is perhaps 
exceptional. We have all been warm, steadfast friends, among 
whom Dr. Gould was one of the most devoted. In recent years I 
had been accustomed to meet him during the winter season twice 


a month at the meetings of the Thursday Evening Club, and we 
seldom met that he did not take hold of my hand with both his 
hands and greet me with the warmest expressions. He was accus- 
tomed to do this same thing with other members of the Class. It 
was the very perfection of friendship that he always showed to 
those who had been his friends. 

Professor Thayer has alluded to the mention in the Resolutions 
of how far he had finished the work he had undertaken to do. I 
think his life in this respect is remarkable. About three months 
before Mr. Parkman died, I visited him in his chamber, where he 
was lying on the sofa. He pointed to a row of books in his book- 
case, and said that there was the work of his life ; that he had pub- 
lished the last book, had accomplished all that he had set himself 
to do, and that he felt very happy over it ; and I congratulated 
him on such a completed life-work. I think the life of Dr. Gould 
was very much the same. He concentrated himself finally upon 
the work of determining the positions of the Stars in the Southern 
Hemisphere. After the discovery of the new method of photo- 
graphing the stars, it was possible to be so much more accurate 
and to go so much farther that he thought this opened to him a 
great field; and it raised in him, I think, also a great aspiration 
for a work that should be of permanent value and use to mankind, 
and he devoted his life to it from that time. He brought home 
the results of his observations, and had been working since on the 
mathematical part of the work and the computation of the posi- 
tions of the stars as derived from these observations, and he 
thought he had substantially completed it. He said in his auto- 
biography that one year more would enable him to finish the 
work. That was two years ago. I suppose that he had substan- 
tially done it. With this, he felt that his active life was a com- 
pleted life. Very few men can say that ; and it is a remarkable 
thing when a man has completed the work that was his ideal in 
early days. 

There are other things I might refer to, but there are others here 
who will speak of them. I will only say, further, that when in 
college we were all very much affected by the preaching of Dr. 
Walker ; and his preaching aroused in Dr. Gould strong religious 
sentiments which kept their hold upon his mind and heart through- 
out life. 



Dr. Seth C. Chandler then said : — 

Mr. Chairman and Fellow-members of The Colonial Society : 

I am well aware that, at any ordinary time or on any other 
occasion than that which has called us together to-day in common 
mourning, my voice should be silent. But in this commemorative 
meeting I confess that I should feel grieved to miss the opportu- 
nity of adding my tribute, and ashamed if I allowed diffidence 
to dissuade me from uttering the words which may fitly come 
from the pupil, assistant, associate, and friend of thirty-four years. 
I have so recently had occasion, in other places, to put on record 
Dr. Gould's achievements, as well as an appreciative estimate of 
his position and influence in astronomical science, that I need not 
take your time in repetition. But I feel strongly impelled to say 
something which could not have been appropriately expressed there, 
although it may be fittingly uttered here. It is this. Do not make 
the mistake of supposing that this estimate of the magnitude and 
character of Dr. Gould's work and influence was controlled by per- 
sonal affection or unduly magnified by individual admiration. It was 
written with the full consciousness that, while it would perhaps be 
more immediately read by friends who knew him in other relations 
of life, and only by reputation as a man of science, it would also be 
scrutinized from a critical standpoint by his astronomical colleagues, 
and that any overstrained eulogy would injure rather than exalt his 
reputation among those competent to judge. With a due sense of 
responsibility for a calm judgment of the place which Gould will 
take in astronomical history, I am willing to say that it is scarcely 
possible to place this too high. I happen to know that, in an im- 
portant astronomical treatise now going through the press, the 
dedication of it to Gould describes him as "the Argelander of 
America." How high the pinnacle is to which he is thus assigned, 
astronomers will appreciate ; but I feel safe in asserting that, in 
the coming century, the parallel, far from being regarded as fulsome, 
is more likely to be reversed, and that Argelander may be fitly 
characterized as "the Gould of Germany." 

Allow me a few words more. In looking over Dr. Gould's cor- 
respondence I have been startled at coming upon something prob- 
ably unknown to any man now living, and which there is nothing 
improper in divulging here. I trust you will appreciate its signifi- 


cance, not merely as an episode in his career, but as an epoch in 
American astronomy. 

■< Coming home, in 1848, from his thorough scientific training 
abroad, with high aspirations of usefulness and consciousness of 
intellectual strength, and after devoting efforts for two or three 
years to hold aloft the standard of a pure astronomical science 
among countrymen too little appreciative to give practical encour- 
agement to them, he finally became disheartened. At this junc- 
ture his old friend and teacher, the great master mind of modern 
astronomy, Gauss, invited him back to Germany to take the 
chair of Professor of Astronomy and Director of the Observa- 
tory at Gottingen. Such a compliment surely had never come to 
an American ; but it failed to turn him from his purpose, although 
Peirce and Agassiz strongly advised him to accept the offer, urging 
the argument that he had done all that could be expected of him 
as a citizen. In the stalwartness of his patriotism he refused to 
accede, and staunchly determined to struggle awhile longer. In 
a few months the invitation was warmly renewed, at a time when 
he was overcome by physical weakness, and he reversed his deci- 
sion. By a fortunate accident he again put aside the temptation, 
which might well have dazzled a young man of twenty-seven. But 
for this, America would have lost him and his splendid record for 
our higher civilization. His subsequent brilliant career would 
have redounded to the glory of Germany and to the shame of our 
native land. This calamity was averted, and his honorable record 
saved as a precious heritage to this community, by his noble love 
of country. 

Can any words be too tender, or any phrases too appreciative, of 
the friend we have lost, of the example he has set us ? 

The Hon. Darwin E. Ware then paid the following 
tribute to the memory of our late President : — 

The distinguished man whose loss we deplore was an astrono- 
mer of a world-wide fame due to extraordinary achievements in 
astronomical science. He was also the President — almost, I might 
say, the Founder — of this Society, — a Society based upon devo- 
tion to the memory of our Colonial ancestry, blended with the na- 
tional sentiment of patriotism for the country in whose wonderful 


history so much that is best is derived from the Pilgrim and 
Puritan fathers. How profoundly he was imbued with the senti- 
ments this Society would inculcate has been observed by us all. 
He had a genial nature, sympathetic to festive occasions. But 
his opening discourses at our Annual Dinners set down for the 
anniversary of the signing in the cabin of the " Mayflower " of the 
celebrated Compact of government, were delivered in solemn tones 
and with a gravity of reverence that was almost austere. Tins 
enthusiasm for man in history, for the moral side of the world, 
is not usually found, at least in modern times, combined with 
devotion to astronomical pursuits. With the ancients it was not 
so. Thales, the founder of Greek astronomy, was one of the 
seven wise men of Greece. He was wise with an all-round 
wisdom. He was philosopher, statesman, and astronomer. Py- 
thagoras founded a school of moral reform. The philosopher Plato 
was not without his influence on the advancement of astronomical 
knowledge. Aristotle, who wrote treatises on ethics and politics, 
wrote also a treatise on astronomy. But the vocation of the 
modern astronomer is so absorbing, the learning to be amassed so 
extensive, the methods of investigation so manifold, difficult, and 
intricate, as well-nigh to exhaust the whole passion of life. 
Kant, in his "Theory of Ethics or Practical Philosophy," says: 

" Two things fill the mind with ever new and increasing admiration 
and awe, the oftener and the more steadily we reflect on them : the 
starry heavens above and the moral law within." 

It is equally true that no calling appeals so strongly to the 
imaginations of men as that of the astronomer. This comes of his 
ability to observe facts beyond the range of common observation, 
and to combine with them reasonings and calculations to which 
comparatively few minds are equal. One science in particular, 
the very monarch of sciences, he must master and make his slave, 
— the mathematics, — a science of such universal range that no 
phenomena of the material world are beyond the rule of its 
majestic formulas. Invested with the power to weigh the planets, 
to calculate eclipses, to predict the advent of comets, the hours 
and minutes of tides, to explain the motions and laws of the 
heavenly bodies, the astronomer seems to the common mind more 
like an intellectual archangel than a man. 


That the sublimities of the stellar universe, its immensities of 
space, the awful poise and balance of wildernesses of worlds upon 
worlds and systems upon systems do not fail to impress profoundly 
not only the philosopher but every reflecting mind, is unquestion- 
ably true. It does not, however, usually happen that the votary 
of the science of the starry heavens is equally impressed with the 
sublimity of the moral law as manifested in human consciousness 
and human history. It would seem almost impossible that the 
incessant contemplation of these infinities of space, these eternities 
of time, these starlit illimitable ubiquities, should not give a 
warping bias to an astronomer not endowed with an indomitable 
humanity. How remote must be his thoughts from human 
affairs ; how vast and cold the solitude in which he lives ; how 
complete his isolation ! From the range of the telescope he points 
night after night and year after year, there comes not a ray 
or pulsation that reaches the heart. The peril seems almost 
inevitable that, by contrast, human affairs shall appear altogether 
petty, and human life an insignificant thing. 

Fortunately for most of us, we do our work in the garish light 
of the matter of fact day, under a monotonous concave of sky, 
with attention undistracted from the common cares of daily life, 
except for the passing splendor now and then of a sunrise or 
a sunset, and at times the transient grandeur of lightning, of 
thunder, and of storm. The roofs of our houses when we are in- 
doors, the obstruction of building walls and chimney-pots when 
we are in the streets, and the general appropriation of the night 
to sleep save us from any danger of too much observation of the 

The poet has made a lover at odds with life address to the stars 
this language of desolation, — 

" A sad astrology, the boundless plan 
That makes you tyrants in your iron skies 
Innumerable, pitiless, passionless eyes 
Yet with power to burn and brand 
His nothingness into man." 

But to a rare nature like Dr. Gould's the solitudes, the isola- 
tions, the inexorable laws familiar to the astronomer's thought 
by the very reactions they induced, might only deepen and 


quicken the courses of human feeling; might stimulate that 
hunger of the heart that only human relations and human 
affections could satisfy; might stir into action the deeper in- 
stincts of the mind, the sense of personality and of its moral law, 
against an oppressive domination ; might rouse the soul within, 
toweling in the ecstasy of its supremacy above the world of 
matter, to wreak upon the veiy stars the defiance, — " I am greater 
than ye all." 

And here let me say, that I know of no man of science who has 
seemed to me more exempt from any bias engendered by scientific 
pursuits. Dr. Gould kept his observatory, his portfolios, and his 
mathematics in the world to which they belonged. The thorough- 
ness of his culture is shown in the fact that they were not allowed 
to alienate him from the study of history, the enjoyment of litera- 
ture, and an active interest in everything affecting the social and 
national welfare. He was full of human interests. He could 
repeat with entire truth the words that called out the applause 
of the Roman theatre, Homo sum; humani nihil a me alienum 
puto. He touched life at many points, and found companionship 

In affairs of business and in undertakings involving scientific 
aims he stood for honor and integrity and the highest practicable 
ideal, inexorable as the iron plan of the celestial mechanics. 

I will not recount the qualities that attracted the regard and 
won the affection of his fellow-men ; I will but read the Dedica- 
tion he gave to his Zone Catalogue of Southern Stars : — 














The chivalrous devotion, the tenderness of affection, the sense of 
the deep, the high, and the holy things of life that breathe through 
these lines, express the man as he was to those who knew him. 

Mr. Chairman, thinking of him now, I do not think of his 
" gray spirit yearning with desire to follow knowledge," and scal- 
ing the gleaming battlements of the universe for a nearer view of 
what he beheld from afar on earth; but rather I think of him as 
standing on the shining orb first reached by Dante in his ascent 
into Paradise, and hearing another Beatrice, "from whom no care 
of his could be concealed, towards him turning, blithe as beauti- 
ful," and saying unto him, " Fix gratefully thy mind on God, who 
unto the first star has brought us." 

Mr. S. Lothrop Thorndike followed with some feeling 
remarks concerning his old friend, between whom and him- 
self the relations had of late become so close. He said : — 

Mr. Chairman, — So much has been said that is true and ap- 
propriate, that there is little to add, — certainly nothing to contro- 
vert. The various events of our President's distinguished career 
have been sufficiently mentioned. The points of his beautiful 
and interesting character have been described, both in the Reso- 
lutions and in the remarks already made, in words which must 
seem to all who had the great pleasure of his friendship simply 
just and appreciative. 

I knew Dr. Gould before he went to South America, just as Mr. 
Thayer has said that he knew him at that period, merely as a 
younger man knows an older man of the same college. The date 
of graduation in those early times makes a great difference. We 
look upon the man who graduated eight or ten years before us 
with a sort of filial respect, and upon the man who graduated ten 
years afterward with a sort of paternal interest. These relations 
of age last more or less through life, although, as time rolls on, the 
distances are amazingly shortened. 

Knowing Gould in those early days simply as a younger man an 
older, I still knew him well enough to feel the charm of his social 
quality, the brightness of his conversation, and the quickness of 
his wit. Then, too, for our acquaintance, such as it was, must 
have begun soon after his return from his European studies, there 


was added in my mind to his social attraction an admiring respect 
for the reputation which he had already won as a rising light of 
American science. 

When he came home from South America, our acquaintance 
became more intimate. Our ages had grown nearer each other. 
We were neighbors and friends in Cambridge. We often met in 
that great social club which is called Freemasonry. Still later in 
life, within the last few months, we became more closely bound 
together by certain domestic ties. 

I was glad to hear and to agree with what was said by Mr. Sears 
of Gould's versatility of mind. This was, perhaps, the most remark- 
able thing about him. He is known to his brethren in science as 
the great astronomer, the great master of applied mathematics. In 
this capacity he is renowned throughout two continents. It is in 
this capacity that his name is mentioned in scientific journals, in 
encyclopaedias, in the records of learned societies. But we, his 
neighbors or his associates in matters quite outside of science, 
knew him so differently. To us, apart from the advantage and 
delight of his friendship, what was most striking was his general 
scholarship, and especially his love for what used to be called the 
humanities. He had been edited, like the Virgil and Horace that 
we used to study, cur a B. A. Gould; for his father, whose name he 
bore, was the learned teacher whose books instructed, or perhaps 
harassed, our boyhood. There is extant an early letter of the 
father, praising the Latin of a letter of the son, and apologizing 
for replying in English, because he says he is in haste, and in that 
condition can write more easily in lingua vernacula. He had, 
besides, lived for many years with the lovely person whom he 
called Aunt Hannah, but whom we always think of as the poetess 
of our juvenile days. Whether, as reported, he ever translated an 
ode of Horace at the age of five, it is not worth while to inquire,; 
but it is certain that his first part in college was a Greek part, 
that he left college to become the principal of a Latin school, and 
when he came back from Europe he taught the modern languages 
in Cambridge. His acquaintance with modern tongues was of an 
order quite unusual in America. Of course he knew German as 
well as English, for he was a Doctor of Philosophy at Gottingen. 
He knew Spanish equally well, for he lived for many years in 
a Spanish country. He knew French well enough to make an 


address in that language before the French Academy. He also 
had a working and speaking acquaintance with Italian, and a smat- 
tering of two or three other languages. His Latin, as Mr. Sears 
has remarked, he never lost. One could not quote a Latin verse 
to him without his instantly capping it with another ; and he made 
just as bad puns in Latin as in English. 

But it was not merely in science or in the languages that he was 
remarkable. He had the most extraordinary memory. He had read 
and remembered all sorts of things, some of them curious, out-of-the- 
way matters, and he had this vast stock of information always on 
tap. One could touch on almost no subject without finding that 
it was something about which he had thought and could talk. 

A noteworthy trait in his character was his fondness for old 
matters. He liked things as they had been a great deal better 
than as they were going to be. This statement must not apply 
to his science. In that he was always progressive. But in re- 
gard to the ordinary affairs of every-day life it is eminently true. 
He enjoyed much more a meeting of the Society of the Cincinnati 
or of the Bunker Hill Monument Association, or perhaps even of 
The Colonial Society of Massachusetts, than he would have enjoyed 
a dinner of the Reform Club, had he ever gone to one, which I am 
sure he never did. This fondness for old things he carried perhaps 
to an extreme. It was that, no doubt, in part which attracted him 
to Freemasonry. I do not mean to say that this was its only 
attraction. His first impulse to join it, just before he went to 
South America, was perhaps the same that in its early days 
prompted so many merchants and sailors who had business in 
foreign countries, and desired there some closer tie of companion- 
ship and friendship than their business could give them. Then, 
too, at all times the lodge was a restful place to him. The asser- 
tiveness, strong but never bitter, to which he was always prone on 
questions of religious, political, or social dogma found no place 
there. He was not moved to bear witness upon any of these topics, 
and this very circumstance was a relief and a repose. Still, as I 
have just said, its antiquity was a delight to him. He liked to 
feel when he went into the lodge room that he was upon the same 
ground that the Warrens and the Quincys and John Hancock and 
John Lowell and Paul Revere had trod in the last century, and 
that nothing there had changed. 



May I add a single word to the remark in the Resolutions of his 
being of an aggressive character and never subject to attack with 
impunity ? That is very true. Quite by the side of his remarkable 
capacity for friendship was his capacity for controversy. He was 
born with this, and he had been trained in it by some bitter experi- 
ences. If an adverse opinion approached him in hostile attitude, 
he was in his earlier days always ready, not with the mild answer, 
but with the return blow; but this combativeness became much 
softened in later life. Then, if an adverse opinion approached 
him, he received it differently. The phrase in our Resolutions, 
" hospitality of thought," is an especially happy one. When the 
opinion different from his own was advanced, he agreed with it no 
more than before, but he received it hospitably. He greeted it, 
not with the welcome of a friend, but with the courtesy with which 
he would have received an opponent under his roof. 

Age, Mr. Chairman, has many blessings. Among the chief, 
perhaps, is this, that if the wine of life is wholesome and pure, it 
grows sweeter and mellower as it grows older. So it was with 
Dr. Gould. 

At the close of Mr. Thorndike's remarks, Mr. Edward 
Wheelwright spoke as follows : — 

Dr. Gould was pre-eminently an Astronomer; but he was not 
only that, — he was emphatically a many-sided man. His charac- 
ter, his natural abilities, and his acquirements would have assured 
him success in almost any sphere of activity to which he might 
have chosen to apply himself. I must leave others to tell of his 
attainments in that noble science to which he devoted his best 
energies; I can only speak of him as a man and as a friend and 
classmate. I first knew him when we entered Harvard College 
together in the class which graduated in 1844. I did not know 
him intimately while in college. We were separated in our studies 
and recitations by the alphabetical divisions which then prevailed, 
and in the classical department by his superior scholarship. We 
never roomed in the same building nor boarded at the same table. 
In short, we did not belong to the same set, for there were sets even 
in those remote days. He came to college well grounded in Greek 
and Latin, as became a pupil of the Boston Latin School and the 


son of one of its most distinguished head-masters. He naturally 
took high rank from the outset in the classical department, and, 
as already mentioned by Mr. Sears, the first college distinction 
awarded him was a Greek version in the Exhibition of 2 May, 

At the Dinner given to Dr. Gould at the Vendome, 6 May, 1885, 
President Eliot, as reported in the Boston Herald, said, " I suppose 
one reason why Dr. Gould gave a good deal of time to the study 
of Greek when he was in college was that it was a required study 
then and that he had to." But that was certainly not the only 
reason. He loved Greek and Latin for their own sake, and be- 
cause he believed that a certain familiarity with them was an indis- 
pensable part of a truly liberal education. 

In a speech at the Annual Dinner of the Latin School Association 
in 1886, he made a noble defence of the study of the classics as 
a sure foundation for scientific investigation, using the words in 
their broad significance. 

" . . . Signs are not wanting," he said, " that the cause of scholarly 
culture in America is in greater danger now than ever before since our 
forefathers' feet first pressed New England soil. ' Quis custodiet ipsos 
ciistodes.' But in spite of all the adverse tendencies, are we not war- 
ranted in the hope and faith that the Boston Latin School will remain, 
as of old, a bulwark of classical training and letters against the pseudo- 
utilitarian tendency of the times ; that its energies are not to be devoted 
solely to the attainment of just so much education, and in just such 
directions as may happen to be requisite at the time for passing exami- 
nations for admission to this or that institution of higher grade ; but 
that its pupils may be assured of such culture as is indispensable for 
scholarly training, and the school vindicate its old renown as a centre 
of education for a sphere of far greater radius than the limits of our 
city of Boston. . . . Let it plant again such seeds as it planted of 
old, — germs of scholarly taste, intellectual refinement, and scientific 
investigation, — so that her sons may long continue to look to her with 
pride, knowing that she has been true to her traditions of the past and 
to the bright and long-cherished auguries for her future. And when 
I say scientific investigations, Mr. President, I use the words in no 
narrow sense. Science, or, in the Saxon form, knowledge, are words 
too noble to be dwarfed by vulgar misapplication. There is no real 
science but the knowledge of laws. Acquaintance with isolated facts, 
no matter how numerous, is not science, nor can it ever be transmuted 


into science save by the power of generalization, which alone can resolve 
its chaos into order or transform the mass — rucHs indlgestaque moles — 
into symmetry and light." 

Again, in replying to certain questions propounded to candidates 
for the Board of Overseers of Harvard. College for the year 1886, 
he said, in answer to the second question, " as to making it pos- 
sible to enter Harvard, without the knowledge of Greek," — 

"... While maintaining that a University should aim at providing 
instruction in all departments of learning, and that ignorance on one 
subject ought to deprive nobody of facilities for learning others, it 
would grieve me if any diploma, of a sort hitherto and elsewhere 
accepted as a certificate of certain scholarly attainments, should be 
conferred by our Harvard upon those who do not possess them. I 
should regret to see the degrees of Bachelor or Master of Arts conferred 
upon young men who have never learned sufficient Latin, Greek, and 
mathematics to enter college at present ; for these degrees have hitherto 
had a special meaning, and the procedure would be too much like 
giving false certificates." 

Plainly his zeal for the study of the ancient classics did not need 
to be stimulated by any official requirement. It is equally plain 
that his knowledge of Latin and Greek was no impediment to his 
early attainment of the highest rank in sciences other than philo- 
logical. It was a help, not a hindrance. In his later years in 
college, however, he did not feel the need of giving special atten- 
tion to the classics, and was apparently satisfied with the pro- 
ficiency he had already attained in this essential branch of what 
he was fond of calling " an all-round liberal education." Hence- 
forth he felt at liberty to devote himself to those studies more 
closely allied to what he no doubt had premonitions was to be his 
special calling in life. In the second Exhibition in which he took 
part, in the first term of his senior year, he was assigned a dis- 
quisition on " The British Association for the Advancement of 
Science," while at Commencement his part was again a disqui- 
sition having for its title "The Infinite in Mathematics." This 
part, he says in the autobiography which he furnished in 1869 
to the first edition of the Class Histor}^, 1 " he was not permitted 

1 The Class of 1844, Harvard College. Prepared for the Twenty-fifth Anni- 
versary of their Graduation, Cambridge, 1869. 


to deliver for want of declamatory ability." This seems a strange 
statement in view of his success as a speaker in after life. His 
style of speaking would not, indeed, be called declamatory; but 
whenever he had anything to say he knew how to say it, in a 
manner appropriate to the occasion, whether in English, Spanish, 
or German. 

According to his own testimony, in the Class History above 
referred to, " he worked hard in college, but not with sufficient 
regard to college routine ; " and he adds that he " found Channing 
a severe trial." This means, I suppose, that he found it difficult, 
as many others have done, to write themes upon set subjects in 
which he took no special interest. He was wont also in later 
years to complain of the injustice of assigning to the rhetorical 
department an undue influence in determining the rank of the 
student. It was probably owing to his comparative ill success 
in rhetoric that he failed to attain a higher place in the rank-list 
of his class, and that he was given at Commencement a Disqui- 
sition only, and not a Dissertation or an Oration. His standing, 
however, was sufficiently high to entitle him to membership in 
the <f> B K. In the Commencement Order of Exercises he is 
noted for "high distinction" in Mathematics and Physics. An- 
other cause for his failure to obtain a higher rank in college 
might be found in the fact that at the end of the freshman year 
he incurred the penalty of " suspension " for four months for com- 
plicity in the making of a bonfire. This involved the loss of a 
considerable number of marks. It will be difficult, doubtless, for 
those who knew Dr. Gould only by reputation, as a grave mathe- 
matician and astronomer, to conceive of him as participating in 
this boyish prank, in which, however, he had as coadjutor and 
.fellow-sufferer a classmate who is now a most grave and serious 
member of the legal profession, — 

" With many a well-placed trust weighed down." 1 

Boys will be boys, even if they afterward become astronomers and 
trustees ; and to be thoroughly a boy is not a bad preparation for 
becoming emphatically a man, totus teres atque rotundus. 

But to those who knew him in the familiar intercourse of every- 

1 Verses by Charles Henry Boylston Snow, Class Poet, recited at a Class 
meeting in 1864. 


day life, Dr. Gould was never the grave mathematician and astron- 
omer. He was no pedant. He never posed, never paraded his 
scientific acquirements. He did not go about, so to speak, with a 
telescope under his arm and an equatorial in his waistcoat pocket. 
He did indeed delight, in his later visits to Europe, as he has 
himself told me, to meet one or more of his old instructors or 
fellow-students in astronomy, in some quiet Swiss valley, and to 
lie on the grass and " talk shop " with them by the hour. Rarely, 
if ever, was there anything professional in his talk among his non- 
professional friends at home. 

My intimacy with him increased after leaving college. My posi- 
tion as Secretary of the Class brought me constantly into relation 
with him as one of the original members of the Class Committee, 
and made me the vehicle of communication between him and the 
Class as a body. It thus fell to me to acquaint him with the action 
taken by the Class on several occasions, notably on the death of his 
wife. During his long exile in South America, the fact that I had 
myself once been in that part of the world, and that I had some 
knowledge of Spanish and of the characteristics of Spanish Ameri- 
can populations, was a new bond of sjmipathy between us. He 
was a constant attendant at the Annual Meetings of his Class on 
Commencement Day when at home, and was always the life and 
soul of these meetings. His cheerful and cordial manner, his great 
fund of anecdote, his retentive memory of whatever had taken 
place in our college days, his eager desire to know all that had 
happened to each of us since graduating, his exuberant wit and 
humor, his contagious laugh, his apt quotations, especially from 
the classics, — all these made him a most delightful companion. 
He was fond of a good dinner and of good wine, though using 
always a wise moderation in the enjoyment of both, and has been 
more than once heard to declare that so long as he was President 
of The Colonial Society those adjuncts should never be wanting 
to its Annual Meetings. It is fitting that in memory of him the 
custom be preserved. Esto perpetua ! 

Evidence of Dr. Gould's versatility may be found in the list of 
societies, other than scientific, to which he belonged. He was a 
member of the Massachusetts Society of the Cincinnati and the 
Bunker Hill Monument Association, of both of which he was 
Vice-President; of the New England Historic Genealogical So- 


ciety, in which he was for a time Councillor and afterward Vice- 
President; of the Bostonian Society; of the St. Botolph Club, 
and not a few others. 

Genealogy was a favorite study with him. A year or two ago 
he completed an exhaustive genealogy of the Gould family which 
had occupied him at intervals for forty years. 

He also, as a diversion, gave from time to time considerable 
attention to the study of astrology. 

Intensely patriotic, he was very proud of his inherited member- 
ship in the Cincinnati, whose meetings he never failed to attend 
when possible. Of the Bunker Hill Monument Association, he 
could boast that he was the eldest in date of all living members, 
his father having caused his name to be entered on the rolls when 
he was only a few months old. 

An instance may be given of his qualifications for a mercantile 
career. His father, after retiring from the position of Principal 
of the Boston Latin School, engaged in trade with China and the 
East Indies. In these enterprises he had met with reverses, and 
at his death, in 1859, his affairs were greatly embarrassed. Dr. 
Gould, as his executor, found it necessary, in order to settle the 
estate, to continue his father's business. This he did for more 
than four years with eminent success, proving himself to be pos- 
sessed of business abilities which, had he so chosen, might possibly 
have made him one of our merchant princes. 

But Gould valued money only as a means, not as an end, and 
was glad, at the earliest possible moment, to lay aside the mer- 
chant's ledger and to take up again his astronomical studies. His 
whole life is a shining example of unselfish devotion to science. 
He was wholly free even from personal ambition. He strove not 
to make himself a name, but to advance the cause of Science, and 
especially to gain for American Astronomy an equal footing with 
that of Europe. 

Of his connection with this Society and his work in its behalf it 
is needless to speak. One of its Founders, he has been from the 
beginning its head and its heart. To him we all looked for coun- 
sel and guidance and encouragement. Its interests were very 
dear to him, and its success his constant desire. We certainly 
owe it to him to do our utmost to make it all that he wished it 
to be. 


Dr. George L. Goodale then said : — 

Mr. Chairman and Fellow-members of The Colonial Society of 
Massachusetts : 

The vivid recollection of Dr. Gould's presence with us at our 
last meeting makes it impossible for us to think of him as absent 
now. And therefore we all feel that the words which we bring 
as a tribute to his memory must be those which we should not 
hesitate to employ if he were in truth with us here to-day. 

You have asked me to refer to Dr. Gould's relations to scientific 
organizations. Perhaps your wishes can best be carried out if our 
time is devoted to a brief consideration of Dr. Gould's conception 
of the highest type of a scientific organization, namely, a Univer- 
sity. My knowledge of his views comes from frequent interviews 
and from a study of his writings on this subject. 

My personal acquaintance with him began soon after his return 
from South America. Brought nearer together by our official 
associations in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and 
the National Academy of Sciences, this acquaintanceship was 
exchanged for the more precious treasure of intimacy. Although 
we differed widely in regard to men and things, and sometimes 
engaged in rather hot controversies, this intimacy was never 

On one occasion I brought to him some perplexing questions 
concerning the relations of certain plants of the Argentine to their 
climatic surroundings. The extent and accuracy of his knowledge 
in regard to this matter, which belonged in a field considered 
remote from that which he had made his own, introduced naturally 
the subject of broad scientific training and higher education. The 
views which he expressed regarding the constitution of colleges 
and universities showed that he had given to the subject most 
serious attention. When, however, I said to him that his views 
were abreast or even a little ahead of the times, he replied that he 
had published his opinion a good many years ago, in fact, before 
steps had been taken to supplement college work by university 
training in this country; but he did not refer me to his printed 
statement of his views. 

Lately I have found the published expression of these opinions. 
The address to the Phi Beta Kappa Fraternity at Hartford, in 


1856, forty years ago, embodies Dr. Gould's views relative to 
higher education. Let us remember, as we review them, that they 
were uttered before Harvard began its transformation, — before, 
in fact, any of our great colleges had struck out the new paths. 
Inspired by his studies in Europe, Dr. Gould sought for our 
country University advantages. 

Forty years ago the American idea of a University was largely 
that of a group of professional schools clustered around a common 
centre for greater convenience in giving professional instruction. 
May I ask you to see how completely Dr. Gould's conception at 
that time differed from that of his contemporaries, and how rightly 
it can be said that he had fully realized the necessity of having in 
our country a true University. He says : — 

"It is Dot solely to diffuse the quickening, life-giving streams of 
truth, but to fill and keep high the fountains whence all the channels 
are supplied. It is not so much for preparing the student to be a 
lawyer or physician, as for teaching him the fundamental principles of 
law and medicine, and imbuing his whole being with the deep truths 
which underlie those principles themselves. ... If, for the sake of con- 
densation and antithesis, I might presume to clothe my meaning in a 
somewhat paradoxical form, — while the usefulness of a College may 
be measured with considerable propriety by the number and character 
of its students, that of a University is in the ratio of the number and 
character of its professors. . . . Surely there can be no confusion as 
to the boundary line between these two distinct institutions. One is 
designed to answer the demands of the community and of the age ; the 
other to point out the paths and lead our country on to a higher, nobler, 
holier, sublimer eminence than it could otherwise attain, or than would 
otherwise be striven for." 

And, further, — 

" We want no University keeping up with the times, and commend' 
ing itself to the public approval." 

Those who had the privilege of knowing Dr. Gould intimately 
will bear me witness that this was one of his characteristic para- 
doxical forms of speech. It must be qualified by what he had in 
mind and what he said next : — 

" We want one which shall be just as far ahead of the age as is con- 
sistent with being within hail, — which shall enlarge and expand the 



mind and taste and appreciation of the public, compelling the admira- 
tion of that public, not soliciting its approval. We want a University, 
which, instead of complying with the demands of the age, shall create, 
develop, and satisfy new and unheard-of requisitions and aspirations, 
— which, so far from adapting itself to the community, shall mould 
that community unto itself, and which through every change and prog- 
ress shall still be far in advance of the body social, guiding it, leading- 
it, urging it onward. 

"That men are born with faculties for progress, with inward prompt- 
ings to investigation accompanied by the capacity to conduct it, is a 
suflicient indication that the Creator and Supreme Disposer meant these 
powers to be cultivated. And the experience of all humanity teaches, 
that His providence is so exerted as to reward intellectual triumphs by 
temporal blessings, conferred, if not on the individual, at least upon 
the race. We know that strong taste, impulses and capacities for 
searching out the secrets of nature, developing the beauties of art, dis- 
covering the laws of existence and of thought, are sparsely and diversely 
conferred. And since, without the support and aid of society, these 
lofty impulses cannot be gratified, the conclusion is inevitable, — that 
it is a duty of the State to promote the culture of special mental powers 
as well as the education of general capacity, and thus to ensure for the 
benefit of the Commonwealth the maximum spiritual activity of its 
citizens. I will not attempt to follow, expand, or illustrate this argu- 
ment. To you its pursuit, expansion, illustration are in no wi>e neces- 
sary. Indeed, an excuse is needed for the allusion to what is so 
self-evident and palpable. Would that the apology were not at hand ! 
But till our own America may boast a University where all her sons, 
whatever their peculiar bent or taste, may find an opportunity to gain 
new light and larger knowledge, we must dwell on this, were it the 
tritest of themes, and lay stress on it, were it the most elementary of 
axioms. . . . The mode of organization is a secondary question, no 
matter how great may be its intrinsic importance. . . . Spread out 
before us is the history of a hundred nations, whence we may learn 
merits, dangers, safeguards. . . . Under any system there will be a liv- 
ing force, a vital shaping energy, which will soon mould everything to 
such conformation with the other institutions, the manners, the habits 
of the age, as is needed for establishing the mutual relations through 
which all the blessings are to flow. In other lands and times, this 
adaptation has been the work of a ' historic development.' But in our 
land it will follow, in like manner, in immeasurably shorter time, from 
the increased vigor of all the influences which act upon the body social 
and politic ; and, chief of all, from the great fact that it concerns no 


privileged class, but the whole people, among which and for which 
and by which it is to exist." 

Mr. Samuel Wells spoke as follows : — 

Although our dear friend, Dr. Gould, was engaged all his life in 
absorbing occupations, in work that seemed to have no limit of 
hours, no marked resting-places such as men of business or even 
professional men find arranged for them, yet he gave much of 
his time to social intercourse with his fellow-men. It did not seem 
to be with him so much a calculation as to the usefulness of recre- 
ation, as a natural and spontaneous enjoyment in the society and 
conversation of those he loved. Often and often he would drop 
the work at his desk, and in harsh and inclement weather go to a 
distance to join a circle of congenial spirits. No one was more wel- 
come than he; his hearty clasp of the hand, his pleasant, often 
joyous smile brought happiness wherever he came. He was so 
natural with it all, and so easy and friendly with every one, that 
when he entered a room where were his friends they would gather 
round him at once to receive his greeting and listen to his kindly 
words. He had also a keen sense of humor and a natural and 
vivacious wit that enlivened his conversation and made intercourse 
with him always interesting and desirable. It was this love of 
friends and friendship that led him to join many societies which 
had social and other functions not connected with his daily work. 

Dr. Gould was especially attracted to Freemasonry by the dis- 
interested friendship that he found embodied in its principles and 
demonstrated in its practice ; and the lodge in which he first learned 
these principles and witnessed their examples, the Lodge of St. 
Andrew, in Boston, became his Masonic home. For many years 
he knew every member of the Lodge, and was beloved by them all. 
He was much interested in the history of this Lodge, chartered 
in 175G, containing among its members many distinguished men, 
of whom Gen. Joseph Warren and Col. Paul Revere may be men- 
tioned; and it was expected that Dr. Gould would contribute 
largely, had he lived, to a Memorial to be prepared to celebrate 
the one hundred and fiftieth anniversary of the- foundation of 
the Lodge. 

Dr. Gould's character and abilities were such as to entitle him 
to hold any Masonic office that he might desire. The highest 


position he attained was that of Deputy Grand Master of the 
Grand Lodge of Massachusetts. He performed the duties of this 
oil ice, at the sacrifice of his personal comfort and the neglect of his 
favorite pursuits, with entire satisfaction to all who were associated 
with him. No doubt he could have been elected to the office of 
Grand Master, but he felt that the duties of that office would be 
too engrossing, and he therefore declined to be a candidate for it. 

He was much gratified on receiving the complimentary Degree 
known as the Thirty-third, or last, conferred only on distinguished 
Masons ; and this honor he fully appreciated. 

He found in these associations the gratification of that thirst for 
love and friendship, honest and truthful, that he longed for. He 
did not love everybody ; he frankly and freely expressed his dis- 
like of shams and pretensions and selfish f orthputting ; but the 
true, faithful, and unselfish friend, even if wanting jthe highest 
order of intellect or the refinement of scholastic education, he 
could grasp by the hand and with his frank and beautiful smile 
say, " My brother." 

To those of as who have been associated with him in these quiet 
retreats, free from annoying cares, from political or polemic strifes, 
where heart went out to heart and mutual affection guided our 
intercourse, his loss is irreparable, his absence leaves a void we 
cannot fill, and the shadow of our bereavement will never pass 

The Hon. George S. Hale then said : — 
Mr. Chairman and Brethren of the Society : 

It is most fitting that I should leave to those whom }*ou have 
asked to speak to you the larger portion of the eulogy to be given 
to our dear friend ; but I should be very sorry to have a meeting 
like this close without one word, at least, from myself in recogni- 
tion and token of a friendship of fifty years — more than fifty 
years — without a cloud or an interruption, although I cannot 
assume or expect to add to the interesting reminiscences and the 
justly measured phrases of glowing appreciation which have occu- 
pied us this afternoon. 

Of the associations that have already interested you so much, 
my own recollections are close and dear. The Class of 1844 were 


justly proud of him, and he was kind and devoted and affectionate 
to us. We were not needed for his glory, but we were very glad 
to share it by reflected light. Even in such an assembly as this, 
we shall be excused for the pride with which we remember the 
trio which adorned our list, — Gould, Parkman, Hunt, — entitled 
to no second honors in Science, History, or Art. In the Harvard 
Peerage, which fastidiously preserves a list of " certain honors and 
positions " held by her sons for nearly two hundred and sixty years, 
there are only three names among the Bachelors of Art — Edward 
Everett (1811), George Bancroft (1817), and Alexander Agassiz 
(1855) — which bear a larger number of these tokens than his own. 
I recall the quietness with which not long since he spoke of one 
of great rarity and dignity then recently received from Prussia as 
Knight of the Order for Merit, recorded of one only of those three 
besides himself. 

During a large part of his life I had not the pleasure of seeing 
him and enjoying that friendship of which I have spoken, and 
which grew warmer and warmer from the days of the kindly 
hospitality of his father's house — which Mr. Sears has described 
— to the last hours of our meeting. It is with delight and pleasure 
that I recall his companionship, but much of his life I could not 
share. His own sacrificial absence, his devotion to his duties, and 
the time which he gave to scientific pursuits here and abroad sep- 
arated him from us. When he returned after what I have spoken 
of as his sacrificial absence, it was with pleasure that I was per- 
mitted then to express our feeling in regard to him in a few lines 
communicated to the meeting with which we welcomed him. I 
hope it will not seem a liberty if I read them to you now, although 
not new nor written for this occasion, and also I hope that they 
may be preserved as the expression on the records of this Society 
of my appreciation and affection. 

Bright Argo brings a hero back, 
With tales of distant worlds and fair, 
Shining in skies beyond our sphere, 
Yet weighed and numbered by his care. 

Bright with the light of Southern stars, 
He seems to wear a Southern cross ; 
Fit token of the honors won 
Through toil and grief, and pain and loss. 


The wanderer we welcome home, 
From far-off lands to us unknown, 
AVhich see, with pride, his name displayed 
On their bright skies, thus made his own. 

But not alone " The Southern Crown " 
Shall cast its halo round his head : 
The stars he worshipped in his youth 
Their shining welcomes o'er him shed. 

May their "sweet influence " give him rest; 
His be the honors they confer ; 
And long unsaid the fated words, — 
41 E vivis cessit stelliger " ! 

May I repeat in another sense the hope that those fated words 
are still unsaid, and may we remind ourselves that although 
marked among the stars he still lives, starred himself. 

It has been said that he had finished his work. I was a little 
surprised, remembering that one of his last remarks to me was, u I 
hope I shall be able to finish my work." I am very glad if that 
hope has been, as it has been said, better and more fully accom- 
plished than this may have seemed to imply ; but there is a sense, 
which we all recognize, in which his work is not finished and never 
will be finished, for it can never be ended for such a mind. 

M O, thinking brain that lately with us wrought, 
By death surprised at thine unfinished task, — 
For one a thousand lives thou shouldest ask ; 
Learning is endless, infinite as thought. 

" Go forth, great mind, raised, now a deathless soul! 
See, weigh, prove all things scanned with larger eye 
Ere thou that slakeless thirst canst satisfy, 
What aeons needed to o'errun the whole ! " 

Dr. William Watson called attention to one subject, in 
which Dr. Gould was deeply interested, to which allusion 
had not been made by any of the speakers. He said : — 

May I say a word with reference to my own acquaintance with 
Dr. Gould ? The allusion which Dr. Chandler has made to Arge- 
lander recalls the fact that something like twenty-five years ago I 
was the bearer of a message which I delivered in person from Dr. 


Gould to the venerable astronomer at Bonn; and I can never 
forget the feeling of affection which the old astronomer displayed 
toward Dr. Gould, and the cordiality with which he greeted me on 
his account. 

One thing more has not been mentioned with reference to Dr. 
Gould, and that is his complete success in filling Mr. Hilgard's 
place as the representative of the United States Government in the 
International Bureau of Weights and Measures at Chateau Breteuil, 
just out of Paris. His achievements there were very welcome, 
and he constantly labored for the advancement of what was very 
dear to him, — the establishment of the Metric System in the 
United States. 

The Corresponding Secretary then presented the following 
letter addressed to him, but intended for this Meeting, from 
Mr. Henry H. Edes : — 

Washington, D. C, 14 December, 1896. 

My dear Mr. Davis, — It is a matter of deep regret to me that I 
shall be unable to attend the meeting of The Colonial Society on Wed- 
nesday and have a part in the memorial tribute of affection and respect 
which will then be paid to the memory of Dr. Gould ; but absence from 
the Commonwealth will preclude my being present. 

As our fellowship includes so many personal friends of our late Pres- 
ident, the affection and esteem in which he was held, his remarkable at- 
tainments in science, his achievements at Cordoba, and the charm of his 
conversation and companionship, will not lack fit expression and com- 
memoration ; yet I cannot refrain from sending this brief written expres- 
sion of my own feelings on this occasion. Personally I have lost by Dr. 
Gould's death a very dear friend whose sympathy and cordial co-opera- 
tion in various undertakings I have enjoyed for many years. Of his 
many noble and lovable qualities, his genuine modesty — an attribute of 
great minds — always impressed me as exemplary. When our organ- 
ization was in embryo, I asked him to join with our associate Mr. 
Inches and myself in signing the invitations, to attend the Preliminary 
Conference which resulted in the organization of The Colonial Society of 
Massachusetts. With characteristic modesty he demurred, saying that 
while he sympathized with the movement most heartily and would gladly 
do what he could to aid it, he thought that some other name would carry 
greater weight than his. He finally consented, however, to append his 
signature, but it was with the greatest difficulty that he was persuaded 


to sign first. The success of the movement was most gratifying to Dr. 
Gould, and he gave to the Society from the beginning not only the 
prestige of his great name but the most devoted and constant service. 
No detail of our work was deemed too trivial to deserve his active in- 
terest ; and his plans for our future were various and practical. He was 
impatient of the unavoidable delay in putting the Society on a firm 
financial basis, and he had much at heart the success of the plan pro- 
posed at our last meeting for procuring an endowment ; indeed, the 
very last time I saw him, — only three days before his death, — he 
called on me to express his regret that he had inadvertently omitted to 
name, during the Annual Dinner, the Committee contemplated in Mr. 
Whitney's motion. This Committee, which Dr. Gould was intending 
to appoint at the meeting next Wednesday, must be named at a subse- 
quent meeting. 

As I write, the thought comes to my mind, Why may not the Memo- 
rial which without doubt will be raised to this eminent scholar by his 
friends and admirers take the form of a permanent endowment of a 
Society he helped to found, of which he was President at the time of 
his death, which enlisted so large a share of his sympathy, of whose 
reputation he was jealous, and whose permanence and success he ar- 
dently desired ? 

Very truly yours, 

Henry H. Edes. 
Andrew McFarland Davis, Esq. 

The Resolutions were then unanimously adopted by a 
rising vote. 




A Stated Meeting of the Society was held in the Hall 
of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, on 
Wednesday, 20 January, 1897, at three o'clock in the after- 
noon, the First Vice-President, the Hon. John Lowell, in 
the chair. 

After the Records of the December Meeting had been read 
and approved, Judge Lowell said : — 

It is my duty to announce the death, since our last meeting, of 
General Walker, one of the most distinguished members of this 
Society. The history of his life has been repeatedly given in the 
newspapers since that event, and in the Resolutions passed by 
different organizations of which he was a member. I will only 
recapitulate here shortly some of the principal events of that his- 
tory. He had a natural and hereditary fondness for what Carlyle 
calls the " dismal science," the one with which most of us are 
afraid to meddle. After he was graduated from Amherst College 
in 1860, at the age of nineteen, he studied law in the office of 
Devens and Hoar at Worcester. Fortunately for us, his intention 
to become a lawyer was not realized ; but the course of his life was 
changed by the breaking out of the war. We have plenty of good 
lawyers in Massachusetts, but there are few men who could do the 
work that he has done. There are few who could rival him in 
the study of Statistics ; few, as I have said, who would study as he 
did the science of Political Economy ; few who could so admirably 
fill the position of head of a great collegiate institution. 

Enlisting in the regiment recruited by his friend Charles Devens, 
lie soon achieved distinction in the war, and during the last two years 




was Chief of Staff — a position of great responsibility, requiring 
capacity of a superior quality — of that General called " the 
Superb," — Hancock. He performed his duties with enthusiasm 
and won the friendship of his leader. His position as staff officer 
was not only one of great importance, but it involved personal 
exposure. He showed courage in the performance of his -duties 
and was wounded once at least. He bore with him from his ca- 
reer in the Army a high reputation for gallantry, for diligence, and 
for usefulness. He wrote the history of the Second Corps, with 
enthusiasm, but with little mention of himself. 

After the war General Walker became a journalist, as assistant 
editor of The Springfield Republican. Afterwards he was a pro- 
fessor at Yale for some years. Still later he was the head of the 
Bureau of Statistics. He was the Superintendent of two Cen- 
suses and successfully mastered and marshalled their statistics, 
and made them the best we have had. He was for a time a lecturer 
at Harvard. Finally he found his most appropriate place as head 
of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Under his super- 
vision the Institute has nourished, and greatly increased in the 
number of its teachers and pupils and in the variety of its courses ; 
and this success, although not altogether to be credited to him, is 
nevertheless due to his influence in no inconsiderable part. It 
does not need that the head of such an institution should be a 
scholar, a lecturer, a teacher, but it is essential that he should 
be a man who under emergencies could command an army or be 
the head of a great industrial enterprise, — one who has a knowl- 
edge of men and a faculty of dealing with them. He had these 
qualities, combined with extraordinary powers of conciliation. 
He had the power of managing not only men, but boys. The 
qualities of his heart had as much to do with his success as those 
of his mind. Besides the performance of his duties at the Institute, 
his activities were manifold, perhaps too much so for his strength. 

The success of the Institute made a great impression through- 
out the world. Last year students came there from all the coun- 
tries of America, including Canada, from Europe, Australia, and 
from Japan, to take advantage of the courses of instruction given 
there. This was partly due to the world-wide reputation of its 
head. He was especially well-known in Europe. He received the 
highest honors not only of Harvard, Amherst, Yale, and Columbia 


Colleges, but of the Universities of Edinburgh, St. Andrews and 
Dublin, and other European institutions of learning, I believe. 

At our last meeting the members of this Society were called 
upon to express their feelings at the loss of their President. Dr. 
Gould was to us all that Walker was to the Institute of Technol- 
ogy. Walker was sixteen years younger than Gould, and might 
confidently have expected many years of continued usefulness. 
Like Gould he was stricken suddenly, without premonition and 
without loss of any of his faculties. In our liturgies we pray to be 
delivered from sudden death, but in our hearts we pray for it. 

We have no communications from him, no memoir from his pen 
in our published Transactions. He has spoken to us at our An- 
nual Meetings, and it is quite probable that if he had lived he 
would have found time in the midst of his multifarious activities 
to do something for us of a more permanent character. 

At the conclusion of Judge Lowell's remarks, Dr. George 
L. Goodale paid a warm tribute to the memory of his class- 
mate and friend, giving a graphic account of General 
Walker's college life at Amherst, and remarking upon his 
tact and influence with the undergraduates, his studious and 
methodical habits, his close economy of time, and his 
powers in debate. 

The Hon. George S. Hale spoke of General Walker's 
life in Boston as the head of the Institute of Technology, — 
which maintained its high rank at home and abroad under 
his wise administration, — and as an active member of 
many literary and scientific associations and social clubs. 
Continuing, he said : — 

President and General Walker, to give him his most conspic- 
uous titles, was born in 1840, graduated at Amherst in 1860, 
enlisted in the Army in 1861, was Chief of Staff, wounded at Chan- 
cellors ville, a graduate of Libby Prison, an Adjutant-General, a 
Brevet Brigadier-General, an officer of the French Legion of 
Honor, a Latin and Greek teacher, an editor, Chief of the Bureau 
of Statistics in the Treasury Department, Superintendent of the 
Ninth and Tenth Census, a Professor of Political Economy and 


History in The Sheffield School at Yale, a Lecturer at Harvard and 
Johns Hopkins, and, in 1881, elected President of the Massachusetts 
Institute of Technology, — fit successor of the admirable William 
B. Rogers. He wrote upon General Hancock, A History of the 
Second Army Corps, The Making of the Nation, and the Indian 
Question ; on Wages ; Land and its Rent ; Money ; Money and its 
Relation to Trade and Industry ; Political Economy, etc. 

I might speak of General Walker as a citizen and public official, 
an educator, an author, an economist, a historian, a statistician, 
an orator, a soldier, and as our associate, or in his happy hour of 
social pleasure — 

" A man so various, that he seem'd to be 
Not one, but [many men's] epitome." 

I do not say all mankind's epitome, for I do not include the motley 
array which Dryden credits to his hero. He was entitled to high 
qualities, moral and intellectual, by inheritance, as the son of 
Amasa Walker, — a student, an economist, busy in public affairs, 
— whose book on the Science of Wealth, a manual of Political 
Economy, went through eight editions. 

Honors were showered upon General Walker. Every morning 
we met him with a new Doctor's Halo. He was a Doctor of Laws 
from Amherst, Yale, Harvard, Columbia, and the Universities of 
St. Andrews, Edinburgh, and Dublin. He deserved these honors, 
and made people like to honor him. Always accessible, although 
always at work, always at leisure, and in his reception-room never 
repellent, those of us who have had occasion to consult him can- 
not fail to recall with pleasure the open office, almost on the street, 
to which he welcomed us with cordial counsel. The manner of 
his sudden death may lead us to suspect that' this activity on his 
part prepared the way for it. He loved social life and was fluent 
and ready in social intercourse. As a citizen, most independent, 
free from personal interest, and ready for any public work like 
Parks, Schools, Libraries, or Art, — 

" Totus, teres at que rotundus." 

Mr. John Noble read the following paper on — 



In the office of the Clerk of the Supreme Judicial Court for the 
County of Suffolk is a remarkable and unique collection of papers 
running through the whole of the Colonial and Provincial periods, 
and extending from 1629 to 1800. They are more than 250,000 
in number, and consist mainly of what were once the files of the 
various courts of the Colony and the Province of Massachusetts 
Bay, of the Superior Court of Judicature held in the several 
counties, and of the Supreme Judicial Court previous to the pres- 
ent century. They are made up not only of the original pleadings 
in the cases, but also of exhibits, evidence, copies of records and 
documents used in the trial of those cases, and of all sorts of col- 
lateral matter introduced therein. Besides these files of court 
there are great numbers of miscellaneous papers, records, wills, 
deeds, correspondence, and papers of every sort of legal and his- 
torical character, to be referred to hereafter. 

How such a collection, so large and of such varied character, 
originated and accumulated admits partly of probable explanation 
and is partly matter of surmise. Through the Colonial period the 
Assistants appear to have exercised all the three functions of 
government, judicial, legislative, and executive, to a greater or 
less degree ; at the outset and in the early years all these powers 
seem to have been vested in the Magistrates sitting as a Court of 
Assistants, and it was • only gradually that the separation of the 
government into different branches took place. Matters of every 
description were within their cognizance. Their records and docu- 
ments would naturally contain papers of every character and on 
almost every subject of public concern, some in the shape of 
originals, some as copies. Carefully preserved and handed down 
from year to year, through the proper official channel, they would 
in themselves make a numerous collection. Then, as their judicial 
powers became more distinctly defined' and were separately exer- 
cised, the files of court, if they ever had that distinctive form, 
and later the files of their successors, the courts of appellate and 
highest original jurisdiction, through the lapse of time, the vicissi- 
tudes of years, carelessness, accidents, and indefinite assignable 
causes, lost their original file arrangement, and became mixed 


iii a heterogeneous mass, — perhaps, however, no less carefully 

Into this collection might naturally come valuable papers and 
documents deemed worthy of preservation, which had no pre- 
scribed abiding place. Down to a comparatively recent time, it 
had only a qualified recognition as a part of the court records, 
though held jealously within court custody. It was bulky and 
cumbersome, more or less in the way, undoubtedly, and so it had 
floated about, a part of it at least for a century and a half, from 
one place of deposit to another, — cellars, attics, chests, drawers, 
and various receptacles. There is a tradition that some of the 
papers were stored in the Old South Meeting-House during the 
Revolution, and that the chests were broken open by the British 
soldiers, who found softer slumbers by spreading their blankets 
on the contents. Certainly the appearance shows rough usage 
and is not inconsistent with such a supposition, and the cinders of 
British pipes may account for many suspicious holes. 

Until the present work of restoration and arrangement was 
begun, a large part of the papers was in the custody of the Supe- 
rior Court, though even then supposed unquestionably to belong 
to the Supreme Court. This may be easily accounted for. Down to 
1855 the clerkship of the two courts in Suffolk County was joint, 
the two officials serving in either. Upon the establishment of the 
Superior Court for that county in that year, in place of the Com- 
mon Pleas, the clerkships were made distinct. One of the in- 
cumbents cared little for such accumulations of the past, the other 
cared much. The latter, with his antiquarian and historical pre- 
dilections, gladly assumed an undesired and unprescribed charge, 
and carried this portion of the treasures to a new field. This part 
of the collection was known to antiquaries, genealogists, and local 
historians; it had also furnished material for many valuable and 
important legal writings. 

Between 1875 and 1880 various efforts were made for the safety 
and preservation of this great mass of valuable and important 
papers, to collect them together, bring them into the proper cus- 
tody, find a safe lodgment for them, and arrange them for con- 
venient reference and use. Chief Justice Gray was especially 
interested in the matter, and once remarked that could this pur- 
pose be satisfactorily and successfully accomplished in his time, he 


should regard it as one of the best monuments of his administra- 
tion. Various obstacles, however, came up and the undertaking 
was delayed, but not abandoned. Finally, in 1883, all difficulties 
had been overcome, and satisfactory arrangements made for accom- 
plishing the work. 

On the twenty-third of October, 1883, an Order of the Board of 
idermen was approved by the Mayor "that the Clerk of the 
iupreme Judicial Court be authorized ... to arrange conven- 
iently for examination and reference the Early Files in Suffolk 
County ; " and an appropriation was made for the purpose ; and 
later a further order was passed authorizing him " to employ such 
.assistance as will be required." An Order of the Supreme Judi- 
cial Court, through its then Chief Justice, Marcus Morton, was 
made that its Clerk, 

" in pursuance and furtherance of the Order of the Board of Alder- 
men, ... be directed to remove all the Court Files and papers now 
deposited in various drawers in the recording room of the Clerk of the 
Superior Court, or wheresoever the same be; and also any papers and 
files deposited in various boxes, chests, and otherwise, in different rooms 
in the Court House ... to such room in the Court House as he may 
be authorized to take for the purpose of carrying out and executing said 
Order ; and to take all necessary and appropriate measures " 

therefor. A room was duly assigned, to which the entire collec- 
tion was removed at once, and placed in security. All was done, 
of course, with the concurrence and approval of the Superior Court, 
which gave every assistance in the matter, and at last the work was 

Carrying out these orders, Mr. William P. Upham, under whose 
charge the Court Files in Essex County had been so satisfactorily 
arranged, was selected as the most competent and fit person, and 
engaged to take the direct charge of the work of arranging, re- 
pairing, and mounting the papers; and with a good force of 
assistants the start was made early in December of that year, 1883. 
Many of the papers were in a deplorable condition, in the last 
stages of disintegration and decay, — some at first sight seeming 
beyond the hope of restoration, and all needing repair to a greater 
or less extent. All, with scarcely an exception, have been re- 
paired and preserved; a very few, a percentage not worth con- 
sidering, were so caked and matted together as to defy every 


solvent and process tried to separate them, and remained to the 
last a paper brick, — preserved however, to await further develop- 
ments and advances ; and in a very few cases nothing was found 
but a mass of fragments too minute to be recognized or distin- 
guished, or only a residuum of dust. 

The work of repair and preparation was difficult and delicate, 
requiring the greatest care and dexterity. It would take too 
long to go into any details of the various and successive processes ; 
the papers speak for themselves. These manuscripts have now 
been cleansed from the dust of years, repaired, strengthened, 
mounted, and securely bound in some six hundred folio volumes, 
accessible for an indefinite future. They have been arranged by 
cases, wherever practicable, and in strict chronological order for the 
one hundred and seventy years which they cover. Wherever found 
in their original files they have been kept together, and wherever 
by means of any indorsement or other indication they could be 
restored to their original arrangement, this has been done. It has 
been the intention to arrange the whole collection in one body, 
in the order of time of their use in the courts wherever ascer- 
tainable ; where this cannot be known, they have been arranged 
chronologically by their last dates. The collection consists ac- 
cordingly of a chronological series of papers, used in successive 
suits, and parallel with the Court Records, interspersed with 
manuscripts which cannot be identified with any particular case, 
but arranged by dates to be brought as nearly as possible to their 
proper place in the series. The papers are numbered consecutively 
by cases or by the separate papers where they occur, the numbers 
reaching about 100,000 of groups. There are also two volumes 
of Plans, and one of Births, Marriages, and Deaths. 

Within a few weeks, through the courtesy of the Massachusetts 
Historical Society, some 15,000 or 20,000 papers, evidently a part 
of the files of the Superior Court of Judicature, in a very broken 
and confused condition, which came into the custody of the Society 
some seventy years ago, 1 have been transferred to my charge. 
These papers are now in process of similar arrangement. 

Besides the great collection of manuscripts already mentioned, 
there is perhaps nearly an equal number which have always re- 

1 Reference to these papers is made in the Proceedings of the Society for 
November, 1896, and January, 1897, Second Series, xi. 183, 221-22G. 


mained in the Clerk's office and have kept substantially their 
original file arrangement. These are the Files of the Superior 
Court of Judicature for all the counties, the County of Suffolk 
being by law the depository of the Records of the court of last 
resort from the beginning down to 1797. 1 These files are broken 
and imperfect, much disarranged and confused by time and perhaps 
careless handling and accidents ; the papers are in many instances 
worn, frail, and torn, and in need of immediate attention to prevent 
irreparable loss. On the conclusion of the first part of the work 
it was deemed advisable to treat and arrange these in a similar 
manner ; and that work is now going on with rapidity and suc- 
cess. When completed it will make a supplemental aggregation 
of the same character, and the entire collection will fill some 1100 
or 1200 folio volumes. A very large number of the missing files 
of this court have been found in the heterogeneous collection first 
described, and this goes to confirm the theory there advanced. 

In the course of the years that the work has been going on 
various additions have been received from various sources, — 
notably some 6000 papers belonging to the files of the Court 
which were received from the Commonwealth and restored to 
the proper custody. About an equal number of Records of the 
General Court and State Papers were transmitted to the Common- 
wealth, to which they were found to belong. 

A working Index, giving the titles of the cases and the prin- 
cipal matter in each case or number, contained in some thirty 
volumes, has been made ; and a more thorough and exhaustive 
analytical Calendar, supplemented by a classified Index of every 
name, place, and subject, is now in progress, and is already com- 
pleted to 1697. 

The entire collection when completed will contain not far from 
half a million of papers, — an aggregation larger and perhaps 
more important than anything of the kind to be found in this 
country, unless, possibly, the Massachusetts Archives in the office 
of the Secretary of the Commonwealth be excepted. It cannot 
fail to prove of inestimable value and to bring a lasting credit to 

1 By an Act of the General Court (chap. 95 of the Acts of 1796) passed 11 
March, 1797, the Records of the Court after 1 August, 1797, were to be kept 
in the respective Counties. — The General Laws of Massachusetts (edition of 
1823), i. 536. 



the County of Suffolk, which with a wise foresight and an intel 
ligent liberality has so generously undertaken and borne the 
expense, and to the successive administrations, Mayors, and Alder- 
men, who have shown their constant interest throughout, and af- 
forded every facility for the prosecution and success of the work. 

As to the contents of the collection only a brief hint in the 
most cursory way is possible, without any attempt at detail. 
The main part consists, as already said, of the files of the courts 
of last resort through more than a century and a half, bringing 
down the litigation and life of the people from the arrival of the 
" Arbella " to the close of the eighteenth century. In the cases, 
and in the miscellaneous papers connected with them, is involved a 
multitude of subjects of interest in the earlier history of the State, 
— the days of the Colony and of the Province, and of the beginning 
of the Commonwealth. The peculiar feature of the whole, in fact, 
is the remarkable variety and wide range of subjects of historical, 
topographical, genealogical, antiquarian, legal, and general interest. 

Here are the records of famous causes which have become 
historic, pleadings, special verdicts, reasons of appeal and the 
answers to them, writs of review, decisions of the ultimate au- 
thority, and papers of every legal description and character. 

Here are found duly attested copies — so far as matter is con- 
cerned just as valuable as the originals — of deeds and wills and 
contracts ; extracts from court records and town records, the 
originals of which have been lost ; among others, copies of portions 
of the records of the Court of Assistants, to fill the long-existing 
gap therein from 1643 to 1673, which will prove of immense value 
in the work of printing the Records of that Court, now under 
way, and accomplish a result in no other way possible. 

Written evidence sworn to before Magistrates was then more in 
use than oral testimony. There are consequently a vast number 
of depositions relating to almost every conceivable subject and com- 
ing from every part of Massachusetts, and many relating to matters 
in the other Colonies. The value of these in illustrating local 
history, and the prevailing habits and customs of the people, as well 
as their political, religious, and social condition, and also in tracing 
genealogies and family histories, is obvious. Much of the evidence 
taken directly in court is in that shape attested by the Clerk. 

Here comes in a new and peculiar value of some importance. 


As many of the depositions were written by persons unskilled in 
♦orthography and consequently written phonetically, they throw 
light on a subject now little known, but of no slight interest, — 
the pronunciation of words and names in the earlier times. 

Here also are correspondence and documents in the hand-writ- 
ing of early Colonial Governors, — Winthrop, Endicott, Dudley, 
Bradstreet, and other leading men in the Colony ; and so also of 
Leverett and others in the time of the Province. 

To indicate briefly and summarily a few of the subjects where 
the papers are numerous, — many concern the early Indian wars ; 
the old French War; the expeditions against Canada, Crown 
Point, and Louisburg ; the story of Fort William Henry ; and the 
Rangers of Brewer and of Rogers. There are also muster-rolls and 
bills for services and supplies, and other papers of varied character. 

The collection is rich in papers relating to the American Revo- 
lution and the troublous times preceding it ; among other matters 
the Stamp Act, privateers, hostages, prisoners of war, persons 
held as " traitors " and as " enemical to the States," and in number 
beyond even mention. Matters concerning the Indians are fre- 
quently found, — Indian deeds, grants, depositions, erection of 
Indian towns, trials and inquests with Indians on the jury. The 
Quakers also appear, — examined as to their belief and dealt with ; 
prosecuted for preaching, absenting themselves from worship, with- 
holding their children from baptism, failing to appear at musters. 
There are also prosecutions of Anabaptists, Atheists, blasphemers, 
contemners of the worshipful authorities, seditious speakers. 

Witchcraft has its gloomy record in some half a hundred groups 
of cases and papers. 

Harvard College has its share, — copies of Charters, deeds, wills, 
and memorials and trials, — some of which bring out sharply the con- 
trast between the College of those days and the College of to-day. 

Other matters and subjects are to be found too numerous for 
more than a suggestive, random mention, — slaves ; apprentices ; 
bond-servants ; lotteries ; land-banks ; inn-holders' licenses, with 
names of taverns, streets, and lanes in old Boston ; piracies in Massa- 
chusetts Bay ; counterf eitings of the currency, with exhibits thereof ; 
cases of hue and cry ; inquests ; inquisitions ; inventories ; con- 
tracts ; executions ; plans of estates, lots, towns, and strips of sea- 
coast ; issues of old newspapers ; papers valua'ble for the basis of 


monographs, — such as Mr. Davis, Mr. Gay, and others have made 
such satisfactory use of, and such as have helped to illustrate Mr. 
Goodell's splendid and monumental work, The Province Laws. 

Court records are sometimes supposed to be of limited interest 
and of less value ; they are looked upon as merely a story of past 
litigation, where the question at issue once settled, they have no 
further value except to perpetuate such settlement and prevent 
further question ; it is thought that practically they have passed 
into the limbo of obsolete, dead legal lumber. This is far from 
being the fact. They define rights in subsequent similar situa- 
tions, they settle legal principles, they determine legal and judicial 
procedure, they furnish material for reducing the law and its en- 
forcement to a consistent system, they are the foundation of Juris- 
prudence. Such papers in this collection have a further value, 
peculiar and distinctive. They illustrate the course of judicial 
procedure in the Courts of every kind for a hundred and seventy 
years. They show the gradual process of development from the 
simple, primitive manuscript forms of process, writs, summonses, 
venires, verdicts, executions, warrants, etc., to the more formal 
printed documents of later time , They supplement the record of 
legislative enactment by showing i low from time to time the laws 
were construed and administered. They show how the fundamen- 
tal principles of judicial decisions were changed 4 irom being at first 
largely derived from the Bible to being finally as much tied to 
technicality and precedent as in England itself. 

In the early years of the Colony the Reasons of Appeal and 
the Answers make much use of quotations from Scripture, as 
citations are now given from text-books and leading cases. A 
pertinent quotation seemed sometimes decisive in settling a dis- 
puted point. Possibly there was sometimes a readier acquiescence 
in an opinion of Moses than in one of the Lord High Chancellor. 

In the Provincial times are often found elaborate arguments of 
able Counsel, — a source from which much ma}- be learned as to 
the construction of the law by the ablest minds of that day. 

From these considerations and for numerous other reasons, the 
Records are of especial value to the student ( jurisprudence ; and 
in many cases, during the early times, the - afford the only means 
of knowledge upon such subjects. A ft :ly satisfactory series of 
Reports for more than a hundred yc rs preceding the earliest 


printed Massachusetts Reports might be constructed out of the 
materials here to be found. 

Further than the many uses already indicated, these various 
records and papers are in themselves a no inconsiderable ground- 
work of history. There is more in them than hard, dry facts, or 
quaint, barren legal verbiage. They throw side-lights on the 
character and condition of the country and of the people, through 
the successive years which they cover. They are something of a 
study in government, economics, sociology, education, religion, 
politics, public and private life. A paper dry and unpromising as a 
Probate Inventory may reveal much of the conditions of the times 
in numberless directions. Even the adjournment or postponement 
of a Court may often be not without a certain dramatic interest 
and historical significance, as, for instance, an Essex term not held 
in 1694, " by reason of sickness and other more weighty occasions 
of the Province intervening ; " a discontinuance in Hampshire and 
in York during the Indian War ; a postponement " by reason of 
the sickness or other bodily infirmities of most of the Justices ; " 
at several times from "the prevalence of the small-pox; " again, in 
1712, u on consideration of the eated insults lately made by the 
Indian enemy," and "the pre ;nt danger of travelling within 
that frontier;" or again- "frci the great body of snow in the 
western part of <he Province and the uncommon height of the 
waters in the roads " in Worcester and Hampshire. In 1772 there 
was an adjournment in Suffolk of the Court which was to be 
holden " on the morrow," to a later day, " as grave charges in a 
Remonstrance and Petition from the House of Representatives 
were pending before the Governor and Council against Peter 
Oliver, Esquire, Chief Justice of the Court, and it was uncertain 
what opinion and resolution said Chief Justice might have formed 
or would form with regard to the propriety of his sitting and acting 
in said Court ; " again, in 1776, the Court is holden at Concord, 
"Charles town .being destroyed by the Enemy;" and at Dedham, 
" Boston having been made a garrison by the ministerial army and, 
become a common receptable for the Enemies of America." Simi- 
lar illustrations mig :t be given almost without number. 

Things seemingly » significant merely indicate how wide and 
diversified is the fields ' inquiry and research, and it is difficult to 
set limits to the possibin res opened up by these musty relics that 


have come down to us. These old manuscripts, too, crumbling 
with age, brown and time-stained, frayed and torn, and bearing the 
indescribable air of antiquity, appeal wonderfully to the imagina- 
tion. There is a mute eloquence in these fragile papers — that have 
outlived Colony and Province, Puritan Magistrates, Royal Gover- 
nors and sturdy Rebels, and, as silent witnesses, have seen the 
shifting scenes of two centuries — which defies expression. As the 
eye puzzles out the rugged handwriting and the vigorous sen- 
tences, the writers seem almost in bodily presence before us. The 
depositions with their quaint and graphic recitals put us back on 
the very spot and time ; we seem ourselves to be eye-witnesses of 
the events. The early days are reproduced with a vividness which 
no formal history can give, and the picture of the times has a local 
color and atmosphere otherwise unattainable. 

Mr. Abner C. Goodell, Jr., expressed his appreciation of 
Mr. Noble's admirable arrangement of these papers in the 
following words : — 

Mr. President: — The paper just read describes the work 
accomplished in Mr. Noble's office so completely, and indicates the 
value, historically, of that vast collection of manuscript so clearly 
and appreciatively, that I think nothing further need be said to 
illustrate the importance of the work which Mr. Noble so persist- 
ently and with such admirable skill and judgment has pushed to 
completion. But since our Corresponding Secretary has called 
upon me to testify to the use which he and I have made of these 
Court Files in our work on the legislation of the Provincial period, 
I do not feel at liberty to withhold my tribute of unqualified praise 
of the Avise prevision and the spirit of enterprise which induced 
the undertaking, and to suggest that a grateful recognition by the 
public is due to Mr. Justice Gray and Mr. Noble, for their united 
endeavors to secure the co-operation of the city authorities of Boston 
in this great work. I feel also that it would be doing injustice to 
the memory of the late Mayor O'Brien not to mention that to his 
efforts, particularly, is due the success of an undertaking of more 
value to future students of our local history than all the publications 
which our historical societies have issued during the progress of 
this work. 

I have been credibly informed that some of the old Files of 


Suffolk County proved such a burden to an officer who had charge 
of them many years ago that, on one occasion, he ordered them to 
be shovelled into the furnace to get rid of the useless lumber ! The 
contrast between the conduct of this man, of old New England 
stock, and that of Mayor O'Brien, a native of Ireland, with no ances- 
tral claims and no ties of kinship binding him to sacredly regard 
every record and relic of our past history, should bring a blush to 
the cheek of every New-England man who reflects upon it. 

I most heartily endorse all that Mr. Noble has said of the value 
of the Reasons of Appeal, filed with the clerks of the Superior 
Court of Judicature for the first third or quarter of a century, as 
contributions to our knowledge of the development of Massachu- 
setts Jurisprudence. Indeed, I deem it not impossible to cull 
enough information from this source to make up a series of Reports 
of select cases illustrative not only of the origin and growth of the 
rules of evidence, pleading, and practice, but of the ascertainment 
and unfolding of the common law, the interpreting of our local 
statutes and acts of Parliament, and determining how far the 
latter were in force here, and precisely the effect of the judicial 
revocation of the Colony Charter upon the ordinances of the 
Colonial legislature. 

Mr. Goodell then, after describing the condition of the 
Court Files when he began his researches in the damp crypt 
under the Clerk's office in the old Court House, where they 
were stored, narrated some instances showing how they fur- 
nish clews to the origin of certain differences, which have 
never been explained, between the practice of the English 
courts and our own, and closed with a reference to the re- 
markable results, in certain lines of historical research, of 
Mr. Andrew McF. Davis's studies of Mr. Noble's collection. 
These results he considered extremely important in a his- 
torical point of view, and, to his mind, they confirm the 
opinion he has more than once expressed, — that the history 
of Massachusetts needs to be revised in the light of the vast 
fund of historical information now made available by Mr. 
Noble, and the skill and patience of Mr. Uphain to whom 
the details of the work have been intrusted. 


Mr. Andrew McF. Davis then said that opportunity had 
been afforded him to examine this collection and to make 
use of the treasures which it contained, in a topical re- 
search the result of which had been communicated to this 
Society. He wished to add his testimony to the fidelity 
with which the work of repairing and mounting the papers 
had been carried out. Mr. Goodell had many times called 
his attention to the value of these Files for historical stu- 
dents, yet it seemed to him that use could only be made of 
them in researches which were confined to narrow subjects, 
and covered but a limited field of time. Six hundred vol- 
umes, containing two hundred and fifty thousand papers, — 
the present condition of the collection, — could not be satis- 
factorily examined by any student of general history. 

Mr. Henry H. Edes described a scene which he recently wit- 
nessed at Mount Vernon on the anniversary of Washington's 
death (14 December), where, besides the daily tolling of the 
bells on the passing river craft, the custom is still annually 
observed of lowering the flag in front of the noble mansion 
to half-mast, and placing upon Washington's coffin a chaplet 
of ivy and a garland of fresh flowers gathered from the 
gardens upon the estate. 

The Rev. Dr. Joseph H. Allen communicated a Memoir 
of Mr. William G. Weld, and the Hon. George S. Hale one 
of the Hon. Martin Brimmer. The Corresponding Secretary, 
at the request of the authors, who were unable to be present 
at this meeting, communicated a Memoir of Dr. Edward 
Wigglesworth by Dr. Henry P. Quincy, and one of the Hon. 
John F. Andrew by Mr. Edmund March Wheelwright. 






In a note of the eighteenth of last August from our late President, 
urging me to prepare an obituary Memoir of Mr. Weld, he says, 
" Until quite recently I had cherished the hope of being able to 
perform this duty of affection myself; but now I have regretfully 
come to the conclusion that it will be beyond my power." Cir- 
cumstances appeared to make it not only imperative but proper for 
me to accede to this request, which was justified by an acquaint- 
ance of something more than fifty years, and by personal interest, 
on near and special grounds, with our friend's career from the 
time of his boyhood to that of his sudden death. 

William Gordon Weld, our late associate, was born in Lev- 
erett Street, Boston, 10 November, 1827, and died at his house on 
Commonwealth Avenue, 16 April, 1896. 

The name, which was his grandfather's, was introduced into the 
family under the following circumstances. On the nineteenth of 
April, 1775, under the alarm that followed rumors of the skirmish 
at Lexington, the wife of Eleazer Weld, of Jamaica Plain, fled to 
Dedham, where her child was born on the eighth of May. On her 
return, some weeks later, he was brought to the Rev. William 
Gordon (historian of the War of Independence) for baptism ; and 
when his father was asked the usual question, " What is the name 
of this child?" he answered, " Your own, sir, if you please." The 
boy grew up sturdy and independent. At sixteen, or thereabout, 
he was dismissed, with a box on the ear, from a lawyer's office 
in Roxbury, for disdainfully refusing to lend a hand in some 



household service : " I was sent here to study law," said he, " not 
to learn housekeeping ! " He was then shipped as cabin-boy on a 
vessel belonging to his uncle, Crowell Hatch; at nineteen was 
master of a packet-ship sailing between London and Boston ; and 
at twenty-seven was attacked off Tunis by an Algerine pirate, 
whom he beat back in fair fight, and further, recaptured two 
American vessels that had been seized: this was two years before 
Decatur's bold dash into the port of Tripoli and his exploit of de- 
stroying the captured frigate " Philadelphia." Captain Weld fol- 
lowed the sea successfully till early in the War of 1812, when he was 
taken on his home voyage by a privateer almost in sight of shore, 
and set adrift in an open boat (which it was his first care to return 
to its proper owners), stripped of the fruits of near twenty years' 
hard service. For he had owned the ship he sailed in, and, as too 
often happens in such cases, a correspondent's negligence had left 
it uninsured against war-risks. The last years of his life were 
spent in Lancaster, Massachusetts, where several of his children 
were born, and where he died in August, 1825. He had married, 
in 1798, the daughter of a Boston merchant, Jonas Clark Minot, 
eldest brother of the historian and jurist, George Richards Minot. 
The first of their eight sons was William Fletcher Weld (1800- 
1881), the father of our late associate, who is well remembered as 
a large ship-owner and a successful merchant on Central Wharf, 
a man of great energy, intelligence, and integrity, — also, as those 
of his nearer circle of friends have testified, of warm domestic af- 
fection and great kindness of heart. 

The eldest son of William F. AVeld, the subject of this Memoir, 
not only was strongly influenced through life by these family ante- 
cedents, but made the family history and genealogy the object of 
much special study, of which his sumptuously prepared record, now 
in the library of the New England Historic Genealogical Society, 
gives easily accessible and interesting proof. To this, by a happy 
accident, I am able to add a few earlier details which interested 
him, and which this strongly developed taste in him appears to 
justify my inserting here. 

When in London, in the summer of 1890, I received a letter 
(from which I will quote presently) from Sir Frederick A. Weld, 
of Chideock Manor, Bridport, Dorsetshire, — a man who had had 
a distinguished and remarkable career in the East: he had, as I 


was told, gone in his boyhood to Australia, and been afterwards 
governor of Singapore and of Madras, and was now spending his 
later years in England, where he died two or three years after. 
In this letter the name " Weld " is claimed to have descended from 
the Saxon Edric " the Wild," — that is, " Forester," rendered Sijl- 
mticus by the ecclesiastical writers, — well known in the story of 
the Norman Conquest as the holder of a great estate in Western 
Mercia, where, in league with the Welsh of the border and with 
other Saxon chiefs, he maintained for five years (1067-1072) a 
desperate resistance to the Conqueror, in one raid destroying the 
town of Shrewsbury, but was at length reconciled and confirmed 
in his estate. This Edric appears, further, to have been the nephew, 
or more probably grandson (nepos*), of a more famous Edric Ste- 
orna (" the Grasping "), a man of great ability and craft, Lord of 
Mercia, the treacherous brother-in-law of Edmund Ironside, whom 
he at any rate, in 101 6, deserted and betrayed in his struggle with 
Canute, and is charged by his contemporaries with having mur- 
dered — some say, with his own hand — the following year. 1 This 
Edric seems to have been the son of one Athelstan, a man in offi- 
cial charge of some ecclesiastical estate. And here the record dis- 
appears in the twilight of the old chronicles. 

To continue with the letter of Sir Frederick Weld : 2 — 

" My father having been a younger son, this place [Chideock Manor] 
is not the old Weld property, Lulworth Castle being the seat of the 
elder branch. This place, however, though of less importance, has 
been since 1248 in the possession of the De Chidiocks and the Arundels, 
from whom I descend maternally ; and I could have shown you curious 
old deeds and charters from A. D. 1248 downward, if you are interested 
in such matters. 

"I imagine that the Boston family were the Lincolnshire Welds, who 
probably branched off from us in Queen Elizabeth's time, or [under] 
James the First. They were Protestants, whilst we were Catholics and 
Cavaliers. I know that there have been Welds at Roxbury, near Boston, 
ever since about Charles the First's time. 

1 See Freeman's Norman Conquest (second edition), i. 640; iv. 736. Edric 
" the Wild," though his career is very obscure, is prominent enough to figure in 
the background of Kingsley's " Hereward." 

2 This letter has the Weld crest, with the motto Auspicium melioris cevi; Nil 
sine Numine. 


" Another old connection of my family with America is through Lord 
Baltimore. He married Ann Arundel, daughter of Lord Arundel of 
Wardonr; and her sister, Clare Arundel, married Humphrey Weld of 
Lul worth Castle of that day. 

" There was a Weld House in London [near Drury Lane] : its garden 
walls are now marked by Great and Little Wild — lately Weld — Streets ; 
and they had also another very large House and grounds, called Balmes, 
in the suburbs ; and a manor near Barnet. Hertfordshire, — Holdwell. 
But the original seat, after 1350, was in Cheshire. Edric the Wild — 
cognomento Guelda (Orderic) — held Wigmore Castle, on the Welsh bor- 
der. We claim, and have a good case for claiming, descent from him ; 
and I understand that the Welds who went to America have always 
made the same claim, which is interesting." 

The first of the name who emigrated to the Massachusetts Bay- 
Colony was the Rev. Thomas Weld (or Welde), first minister of 
Roxbury, who was forced into exile, in 1632, by the persecution 
of Archbishop Laud. He, however, returned to England in 1641, 
on " some weighty occasions for the good of the country," 1 and 
remained there till his death in 1662, an efficient " friend at court " 
to the Boston colonists. The founder here of the present family 
was Captain Joseph Weld, son of Edward, of Sudbury, Suffolk, 
born about 1595, who emigrated hither in 1636. Our late asso- 
ciate was of the seventh generation in descent from him. The 
succession is as follows : Joseph, 1595-1646 ; John, 1623-1691 ; 
Joseph, 1650-1712; Joseph, 1683-1760; Eleazer, 1737-1800; 
William-Gordon, 1775-1825; William-Fletcher, 1800-1881; Wil- 
liam-Gordon, 1827-1896. 

The subject of this notice I recall as I first saw him, a boy of 
seventeen, taciturn and somewhat shy. He found much of the 
same difficulty with his grandfather and namesake, under the re- 
straints of a bookish education, and would refer to this, half 
humorously, in his later years. But a quick and sagacious 
observation, with a very retentive memory, gave him a mental 
outfit which always held the respect of his associates and friends. 
I remember that when a Chinese junk appeared, to everybody's as- 
tonishment, in New York harbor, he had an eager curiosity to visit 
and explore it ; and I heard from him, at his father's table, a most 
intelligent and entertaining description, which needed only a little 

1 See Publications of this Society, i. 153. 


literary practice to do credit to a professional reporter. In general, 
however, he appeared retiring — perhaps diffident — in communi- 
cation, unless it might be with a very near friend ; while, in ex- 
pressing a judgment he had formed, he would very likely be 
positive and abrupt. This, with a certain reserve of temperament 
and diffidence of speech, may have been what led a friend of his to 
speak of him as " one of the most misunderstood men in Boston ; " for 
there were qualities and there were acts of his which should have 
been quickly recognized for what they were, as showing a character 
strongly marked and easily understood. 

His earlier business life, for about twenty years, in the commer- 
cial house of William F. Weld & Co., appears ■ to have had less 
directly to do with the larger enterprises than with the confidential 
service of the firm. Apart from the strong sense of business re- 
sponsibility, therefore, it may not have exhibited his more strictly 
characteristic traits so clearly as they came afterwards to be known. 
These are expressed with great precision by one who has acted for 
fifteen years as responsible manager in a business enterprise set on 
foot and largely sustained by Mr. Weld : — 

" He had a good deal of courage and enterprise, and particularly te- 
nacity : he would naturally tend to do what was solidly and substantially 
for the ultimate good of a Company rather than work for immediate 
profit. He was courageous and reliable in difficult circumstances." 

And from the same authority I learn that "the great perform- 
ance of his life was his successful care [as trustee] of his father's 
estate, which he doubled by judicious investment ; " and that he 
" was very exact, well informed, and thoroughly posted in the line 
of real estate and investment, — much better informed than the 
average man of business." 

Again, among the friends most competent to judge, the prompt- 
ness, courage, and sagacity of his decision at a doubtful crisis were 
held in as high esteem as the tenacity of purpose so characteristic 
in him. A striking example of this decision was when the Great 
Fire of 1872 had swept away a vast amount of property invested in 
insurance, including that of the Prescott Company, in which Mr. 
Weld was the principal stockholder. While the ruins were yet 
burning, he had already planned and was proceeding to carry out 
the scheme of reconstructing the company on a stronger foundation, 


and developing its business on a broader scale. He has since been 
engaged in directing operations that involved still graver anxieties 
and were exposed to heavier risks, — in particular, as the President 
of one of the Cattle Companies of the Western Plains. As to this 
last, a long tale might be told of difficulties, losses, and hazards, 
especially in its earlier years, which he met with the same dis- 
passionate sense of what was due to his subordinates, with the 
same stubborn, usually placid, not always sanguine, but still un- 
bending temper. 

In affairs of such complexity it would be only natural if the 
manner and even the temper of one compelled to direct them from 
a distance should be described, at times, as arbitrary, dictatorial, 
and abrupt. If it was ever so with Mr. Weld, two considerations 
will greatly modify any such judgment of him personally. On the 
one hand, a very common form of self-assertion, or class pride, was 
wholly wanting in him : his speech, where it might have been im- 
perious or dictatorial, was noticeably considerate and gentle, so 
that those in his near personal service often felt an attachment to 
him affectionate as well as loyal. His elderly butler received me 
at the door with tears in his eyes on the day of the funeral ; and 
since his own death I have learned that (though he had never 
spoken of it) he was one of the evening class of boys whom Mr. 
Weld had trained in early years in the principles of a business 
education. On the other hand, those whom he has employed in 
offices of trust have found in him a steady and persevering con- 
fidence, where one of equally keen sagacity with his, but hastier 
in temper, would have broken short off with such agents — perhaps 
unjustly. To make this clear might require me to specify more 
exactly ; but, while it would be indelicate and invidious for me to 
offer judgment, I am sure that the trait indicated was such as I 
have attempted to describe. 

It should be added that, while in personal matters he was often 
very liberal of gifts, his real generosity was even greater in the 
time and service he gave to the interests of others. For several 
years of his early business life he taught regularly, twice a week, 
an evening class of boys in Pitts Street Chapel, " allowing nothing 
to interfere with this work," serving one year with the same strict 
fidelity as Superintendent. Thus he helped to organize, and la- 
bored very effectively in carrying on, the first experiment in free 


evening schools in this city, — an experiment which has since been 
carried out and developed as part of the municipal system of public 
instruction. There are now, I am told, men in active business life 
who look back with personal gratitude to what he was and did for 
them, in opening to them that opportunity of a higher education. 

Another experiment, which proved less successful, was equally 
praiseworthy in its motive. It was an attempt, made some thirty 
years ago, to construct — out of a handsome stone building which 
he bought for the purpose — a model tenement-house, so as to 
provide under careful supervision a wholesome and cleanly lodging 
for families, conveniently near to the docks and business streets. 
He gave a good deal of thought to what proved a troublesome, 
costly, and, at length, unsuccessful scheme. But he persevered in 
it, for some years, with his own dogged tenacity of purpose ; and it 
was not dropped until he was foiled by the incorrigible untidiness 
and heedless unthrift of the class of tenants for whom it was 

Another scheme in which he was strongly interested has proved, 
through good management, of great and lasting value to the hum- 
bler class of borrowers, who, according to a Report upon the sub- 
ject, were sometimes compelled to pay on petty loans ten times the 
legal rates of interest, and more : I have myself had to do with a 
case where the debtor was charged at the rate of ten per cent a 
month, twenty times the old legal rate. It was in the interest of 
such that the Pawners' Bank was established in 1859, — with his 
active help, though his name is not among the corporators. Under 
its amended charter, as the Collateral Loan Company, it has in a 
single year (1894) issued loans to the amount of $677,657, the 
average amount of each loan being something under seventeen 
dollars; during 1896 there were made 16,917 loans of five dollars 
each, or less. Only one in twenty of all the loans has to be settled 
at auction, and any amount so received over the sum loaned is 
retained for the owner of the property in pawn. Of this most 
beneficent institution — if we reckon it by the amount of obscure 
misery it lightens — Mr. Weld was one of the founders and among 
the first directors, giving a great amount of time and energy to 
insure its success. 

In the activities which have been now described, as in others 
which his nearer friends will recall, our late associate showed a 


deep sense of responsibility in the holding of inherited wealth. 
This is further evidenced by the characteristic provisions of his 
will. Among the objects there bountifully endowed are the 
Home for Aged Women, of which he had been a constant bene- 
factor and watchful guardian ; the Butler Asylum for the Insane 
in Providence, Rhode Island, which had in him a Trustee actively 
interested in that charge ; the Children's Mission to the Children 
of the Destitute and the Kindergarten for the Blind, — two of 
the most beautiful and widely as well as humbly useful of all the 
charities of this city. 

Mr. Weld married, in 1854, Miss Caroline Langclon Goddard, of 
Brooldine, who survives him. Their elder son, William-Fletcher, 
born 21 February, 1855, a Harvard graduate of 1876, died in 1893, 
at his estate in Brookline. The younger, Charles-Goddard, a 
graduate of the Harvard Medical School in 1881, holds an office in 
Boston as Trustee of the family estate, and is now a member of this 
Society, having been elected last December to succeed his father, 
who became a member 8 February, 1893. This notice may fitly 
close with the following, taken from an Obituary published in the 
Boston Evening Transcript of 16 April, 1896 : — 

"William G. Weld died suddenly this forenoon at his residence, No. 
6 Commonwealth Avenue. He had been suffering from a severe cold 
for some weeks, but nothing serious was expected from its effects. 
Yesterday he was at his business office as usual, and he enjoyed a social 
evening with his friends last night. This morning he did not feel so 
well as for the last few clays, and for the first time a physician was 
summoned. Even at this stage no cause was felt for alarm ; but an 
hour later, at eleven o'clock, he died of heart-failure. He retired from 
active business about twenty-five years ago, but has long been identi- 
fied with many institutions, being one of the trustees of the Old Ladies' 
Home, a director of the Second National Bank, a member of The Colo- 
nial Society of Massachusetts, and he was also a director of the Butler 
Hospital for the Insane in Providence, R. I. Earlier in life he had been 
a director in various insurance companies, but had resigned from these 
offices many years ago. He has for years had his residence at Newport, 
R. I., but has passed his winters in this city. In a quiet way he has 
always contributed to charities, many institutions having been benefited 
through his generosity." 


9l r LaAXto^ frrr^-^yrv 








Maetin Beimmee, born in Boston on the ninth of December, 
1829, was the only child of Martin Brimmer, of Boston, and Har- 
riet Wadsworth, of Geneseo, New York, and a descendant of 
Herman Brimmer, of Osten, near Hamburg in Germany. Martin, 
the son of Herman, born in Osten, came to New England about 
1723. His oldest son, of the same name, died in 1739; and the 
second son, also named Martin, born in 1742, the grandfather of 
our associate, — who was thus the fifth of his name, — married 
Sarah Watson, of Plymouth. He was also a descendant of Andre 
Sigourney (Sejourne), born in France, who came to New England 
from Rochelle in 1686 as one of the French colonists of New 
Oxford, Massachusetts. Andre's son Andrew, also born in France, 
was the father of Susannah Sigourney, mother of the two brothers 
who bore the name of Martin Brimmer. 

Andre' Sigourney was a Huguenot; and Martin Brimmer, the 
immigrant, was a member of the Huguenot congregation which 
worshipped in School Street. He and others were naturalized by 
a Provincial Act of 1730-31, 1 and in his Petition 2 he described 
himself as "A Protestant German came from Hanover." 

Those who loved and admired Martin Brimmer may find in this 
commingling of races a source of the rare combination of quali- 
ties which they trace in him. The quiet reserve and solidity of 

1 Province Laws, ii. 586. 

2 See a copy of this Petition, ante, pp. 241, 242. 



his German ancestor were enlivened and made attractive by the 
gracious elegance of manner derived from his French descent. 
His Pilgrim origin disclosed itself in a New England conscience, 
tempered by a cheerful Huguenot faith. His gentle conrtesy did 
not weaken his firmness, nor did his fidelity to his convictions in 
conduct or expression diminish their influence upon those with 
whom he might not agree. 

His father, of the same name, was a successful merchant and 
useful citizen of Boston, who knew how to acquire and how to 
use wealth. He served his native city as Mayor for two years, in 
1843 and 1844, and was interested in the cause of education, to 
which he contributed by his public service and private generosity. 
In Mayor Brimmer's Address to the City Council of 1843 the first 
subject to which he feels it his duty to draw their attention is 
the situation and construction of the County Prison ; and in his 
remarks he comments upon the importance of classifying the 
prisoners : — 

"The untried prisoner should be separated from the convict — the 
young should not be subject to the contamination of the old offender 
— and the poor debtor should be separated from both. Apartments 
entirely disconnected should be provided for females, and all intercourse 
of every kind with other prisoners be prevented." 

The great objects of a prison, he says, are, " First, the safe keep- 
ing of the criminal ; and second, as far as may be, his reform." 
Referring to the Public Schools, he warmly declares : — 

" Happy the people whose sons and whose daughters may be well in- 
structed at the public charge ; and happy, thrice happy, that community 
all of whose children shall receive a physical, moral, and religious edu- 
cation, to the glory of God and the service of the State." 

In 1844 the Mayor urges — 

" the importance of enlarged views in relation to the improvements 
of the city, in extending and beautifying our streets and public places, 
in a careful attention to internal health and police, in an enlarged sys- 
tem of internal and external intercourse, in a liberal encouragement of 
charitable and literary institutions, in a far-sighted preparation for the 
moral, literary, and physical education of the rising generation. AVe 
are to call to mind that, although our borders are narrow, we are the 


centre of a dense and increasing population ; that our city is the capi- 
tal of an extended portion of our country, looking to our example to 
be imitated or shunned as our policy of municipal government shall be 
narrow or enlightened. " 

And after speaking of the early establishment of a free school, 
he adds : — 

" It was ordered to be a ' free school ' ; it was maintained at the pub- 
lic expense, and it was to be ' for the town/ — that is, for all the inhabi- 
tants, — and it is hoped that these enlightened sentiments will prevail 
as long as this community shall exist." 

These are now familiar and accepted thoughts ; but it is pleasant 
to trace the inheritance which stimulated the interest of the son 
in the objects to which the father gave his enlightened efforts. 

The son was educated principally by private instruction. His 
close intimacy with one of his tutors, Francis E. Parker, well re- 
membered for his scholarship, wit, and remarkable judgment, saga- 
city, and ability, was continued during his life. Mr. Brimmer 
entered the Sophomore class at Harvard College in 1846, at the 
age of sixteen, and graduated in 1849 with Charles R. Codman, 
Horace Davis, Thornton K. Lothrop, Lemuel Shaw, our associates 
Charles F. Choate and the late James W. Austin, and others. 
In childhood, and also after his graduation, he spent some time 
in Europe, where he attended lectures at the Sorbonne, and re- 
turning in 1853, at the age of twenty-four, was elected a Trustee 
of the Boston Athenseum. Soon after, with a Director of the Emi- 
grant Aid Society, of which he was subsequently a member and an 
officer, and, as a voluntary service, he visited Kansas to report upon 
the success of the Avork for which it was organized. He was inter- 
ested not only in the cause of freedom, but in charities, public and 
private, as a State Trustee of the Massachusetts General Hospital, 
a Director of the Farm School, a Trustee of the Perkins Institution 
for the Blind, and a Director of the Provident Association; and 
for twenty-five years he was also President of the Boston Co-opera- 
tive Building Association. In 1859-61 he was a member of the 
Massachusetts House of Representatives ; in 1864, of the Senate ; 
and in 1876 he cast his vote as a Presidential Elector for Ruther- 
ford B. Hayes. Interested in the higher politics, he once allowed 
his name to be used, in 1878, as a candidate for Congress, but he 


had no appetite for political service. His health was delicate, and 
a slight but permanent lameness unfitted him for the active sports 
of youth, but did not deprive him of a natural and characteristic 
dignity of carriage. We find him, naturally, in the House for two 
years a member of the Committee on Public Charitable Institu- 
tions, and, in 1861, of that on Education; in the Senate, in 1864, 
of that on the Treasury, and Chairman of the Committees on 
Federal Relations and on the establishment of a Military Academy. 
One of his associates * in the House writes : — 

" I cannot recall that he made any speech ; if he spoke at all, it was 
hut seldom ; but what I do distinctly recall was his constant attendance 
upon the sessions of the House, and his close attention to its business. 
If the Journals of his years of membership are examined, I think his 
name will be found among the yeas or nays on every roll-call. There 
never could arise an occasion when he did not have the courage of his 
convictions. I think he did not know how to dodge. Just what his 
services were in connection with obtaining from the Commonwealth 
the grant of land for the Institute of Technology, I do not now 
remember ; but ever since the session that granted the location his 
name has remained in my mind as one of a small band entitled to the 
credit of securing the enactment 2 that made the establishment of the 
Institute possible." 

Mr. Brimmer represented Ward 6 in the City of Boston, and 
one of his associates tells me that a member who was called to ac- 
count for changing his vote, after a statement by both of them, 
replied : " The Representatives from Ward 6 in Boston [naming 
them] are very different men from a great many members of this 
House. When they make a statement here, we know that they 
mean to state the exact truth." 

He was an interesting example of that product of a fine intel- 
lectual soil which we attempt to describe as " culture," without 
pretence or assumption. With the Art Museum, of which he was 
the leading Founder and long a Trustee, he was identified by a 
service of nearly twenty-six years. It remains an outward and 
visible evidence and sign of that love and appreciation of Art 
which enabled him to assist so wisely in its foundation and perma- 
nent establishment. His long service in the management of Har- 

1 Mr. Thomas Hills. 2 Acts of 1861, chap. 183. 


vard College as an Overseer and a Fellow was his rich contribution 
to the cause of the higher education. The brief examples which 
he has left of his capacity for expressing the refined and cultivated 
taste and the wide information which illustrated and guided his 
efficient action, lead us to regret that he was not more abundant 
in such efforts. Mr. Brimmer delivered two admirable addresses 
upon the meaning, the conditions, and the mission of Art, — one at 
Wellesley College, 23 October, 1889, upon the opening of the 
Farnsworth Art School; one at Bowdoin College, 7 June, 1894, 
upon the opening of the Walker Art School, — inspiring text- 
books for their pupils, — full of a deep and delicate appreciation 
of the value and influence of Art, of its historical importance and 
significance, its elevation and power of elevation, its association 
with the higher ideals and nobler activities of nations, as "an ex- 
pression of the hopes, the faith, the life of mankind." He asks, 
in the former : 1 " Why is it that we establish schools to teach the 
arts of design, and museums to illustrate them? What is the 
real significance of these arts?" 

The lovers and the students of Art owe much to him for the 
manner in which, in answer to these questions, he shows its civil- 
izing and educational influence, and makes its study attractive, 
like " divine philosophy," and not a mere fancy " engendered in 
the eyes." " And when," he says, — 

"led on from one great work to another, we begin to discover their re- 
lation to each other and to the life in the midst of which they were pro- 
duced, then the narrow bounds we have set up fall away, and a wide 
horizon opens around us on every side. We see that style and execu- 
tion and design are but the foreground of the scene before us, are but 
the way through which the mental vision reaches out to great ends. We 
see that Art, in its widest and truest sense, is not mere luxury or decora- 
tion, but an expression of the hopes, the faith, the life of mankind. 
Through visible images our eyes penetrate to the inner thoughts of men 
of distant races and remote periods. We contemplate the ideas that 
filled their minds, the feelings that impelled them, the aspirations in 
which they found support. We trace the instincts of race, the rise and 
fall of national spirit, the growth and decay of religions that have 
passed away. We behold the ideals of beauty in every age and nation 
as they came forth from the hand of those men who expressed them 
best. We follow the contending influences which led men now this 

1 Page 2. 


way, now that, and we mark the impress which the man of genius 
stamped upon his time. The merest glance over the field is enough to 
assure us that the end of the study of Art is the knowledge of humanity 
itself on a side not less instructive or inspiring than we find in the study 
of literature or of history." 1 

It is interesting to observe how he connects with his love of Art 
and its work his interest in his country and his countrymen. 
When he speaks of the triumph of Art in the White City of 
Chicago, he says, in the address at Bowdoin College, — * 

"The architects had discerned a great guiding method of monumen- 
tal art, which had indeed already governed the design of noble works 
of other days : unity in conception, freedom in adaptation, variety in 
execution. They had rejected competition. They had avoided the 
dividing and distracting effect of giving a free hand to individual 
taste. They had recognized that great purposes are accomplished 
through the concentration and harmony of competent minds, through 
the curbing of personal ambitions for the attainment of a common 
end, through the restraint of emulation within limits prescribed by the 
common weal. How easily could they have spoiled the result by using 
other means ! How fortunate it would be for any large undertaking, even 
for the government of a nation, if it were guided by a like principle. 
In fact, it may be conceived that, if we could apply these springs and 
rules of action to our own national affairs, we might, perhaps, be even 
better governed than we are now." 2 

And again, in the Address at Wellesley College : — 

" Then, remembering that art can have influence only on those who 
have some opportunity to enjoy it, we may find reason to hope for the 
broadening of that influence in the fact that the great body of working- 
people are, on the whole, acquiring a greater command of their time. 
By a process which has been going on for more than a century, the 
advance of machinery has steadily tended to reduce the hours of daily 
labor; and that leisure which the Athenians gained by getting their 
work done by slaves, which the Florentines gained by getting their bat- 
tles fought by mercenaries, our age is conquering by a nobler and surer 
process." 8 

Mr. Brimmer's sketch of the History of the Religion and Art of 
Ancient Egypt, and of the effect of physical and local causes upon 

1 Page 3. 2 Tage 23. 8 Page 27. 


its form and manifestations, and of its elevated religious elements, 
is of great and permanent interest and value, and characteristic of 
the writer. He detects the soul of goodness in its form and the 
dignity and grandeur of its expression, without ignoring its limits 
and defects. I venture to quote some passages from his selection 
of the moral precepts of its teachers, as not inappropriate in its 
description of what he was and what he liked : — 

"The Sage warns his pupils against contentious discussions and 
against repeating unguarded language. ' Do not repeat an excess of 
language ; do not listen to it ; it is something which has escaped from 
the heat of the soul.' ' If thou desirest that thy conduct should be good 
and free from all evil, avoid bad temper. It is a pernicious malady 
which leads to discord. . . . When a man has taken Justice for his 
basis, walks in its ways and dwells therein, there is no place in him for 
ill humor.' Activity, contentment, and cheerfulness are dwelt upon as 
virtues : ' Be active and diligent through your life, doing more than is 
required, but see that you do no wrong in your activity. He brings mis- 
fortune in his house, he who has a heart without energy. Let your face 
be light with cheerfulness during the days of your life.' " 

Such was the ideal which he realized. 

Mr. Brimmer had many appreciative friends. All who knew 
him were his friends, but some " touched to finer issues " saw more 
clearly than others the qualities which revealed themselves " in his 
happier hour of social pleasure." One of these whom he in like 
manner appreciated and enjoyed permits me to add to the interest 
of this paper and to my own imperfect description the impression 
derived from an intimacy of many years : — 

"In trying to put together, as I promised you, some recollections of 
Mr. Brimmer, I not only feel myself overwhelmed by a flood of memo- 
ries, reaching back for more than thirty years, but also fully realize 
how difficult it is to give you an intimate impression of one whose prin- 
cipal characteristics were so balanced and harmonious as his. 

" Striking contrasts in character, dramatic incidents in conduct, and 
those changing phases of light and shadow which are supposed to add 
interest to the portraiture of most men, found no part in the equilibrium 
of that rare personality as I knew it first, when, just returned from for- 
eign travel, I met Mr. Brimmer in the drawing-rooms of Boston. He 
was scarcely thirty ; but his classic face, his distinguished bearing, and 
those extraneous advantages which belong to large wealth and an old 


and honored name had already given him that air of prestige which 
Boston never afterwards failed to recognize as his rightful patrimony. 
And if with all this a something of coldness and reserve, and a serious- 
ness scarcely youthful, seemed to the casual observer to cling a little 
too closely to the dignity of his manner, the impression was quickly 
dispelled, on a nearer approach, by the beauty of a voice and a smile of 
which I have rarely ever found the counterpart. 

" With his marriage to a dear friend my friendship with Mr. Brimmer 
soon deepened into intimacy ; and as my mind goes back to those early 
days, what memories I recall of that delightful time ! Once more I am 
seated at the ever-hospitable board on Beacon Street, with the bright 
circle that was wont to gather there, or on the piazzas at Beverly, and 
among the ferns and rocks and pine-needles of Witch Wood, we once 
more talk with youthful freshness of all that most interests our minds 
or is dearest to our hearts ! At Beverly, as in Boston, rare spirits 
would often gather, — Tom Appleton, Frank Parkman, William Hunt, 
Frank Parker, and others ; and le causeur cles Lundis, Sainte-Beuve him- 
self, might sometimes have envied those long, inspiring talks, with the 
pine-trees whispering overhead and the surge of the summer sea not far 
away ! And then in the autumn evenings what moments were those 
when Mr. Brimmer would read aloud, to a chosen few, some page from 
Shakespeare, or Dante, or Sainte-Beuve, or Musset, his beautiful voice 
and rhythmical cadence adding a musical charm to the ' winged words ' ! 
This reminds me of our long dispute — the only one — over Music it- 
self, Mr. Brimmer declaring that he was indifferent to it ; in fact, he 
would laughingly add, 'it almost amounts at times to a dislike,' — I 
always contending that the rhythm and the cadence of his reading dis- 
proved his statement. Years afterward, when he confessed his delight 
in Wagner, and I instantly proclaimed my victory in our long dispute, 
he answered that the trouble had not been with his musical taste, but 
with the inferiority of all musical composition up to Wagner's time ! 

" Mr. Brimmer's early years had been passed in France, and that, to- 
gether with his Huguenot blood, had given him a certain predilection 
pour le pays clu beau langage, and for its art and its literature. But 
with it all he was truly an American, believing firmly in the institutions 
of his native land and in the great future that awaited her. It was in- 
deed a rebuke to one's doubts to hear him talk of America and of the 
men who had helped to make her what she was and what she promised 
to become. He had a great admiration for Abraham Lincoln, and was 
among the first to place him by the side of Washington in the gallery of 
our great men, where, since that time, the world has for the most part 
conceded that he belongs. 


" In the summer of 1861 I went abroad, where I remained until 1869. 
On my return I found the same hospitality, the same warmth of wel- 
come, whether in Boston or at Beverly. That brilliant hospitality ! those 
faithful friends ! the bright talks, the bons mots, all sparkling and fresh 
as ever ! In the eventful years of my absence, Mr. Brimmer had be- 
come a potent influence in Boston that was felt through all her councils, 
whether of art or of learning, in political or national affairs. At Har- 
vard, and later on at the Art Museum, his opinion was an authority 
rarely ever differed from ; while his occasional addresses at Bowdoin and 
elsewhere showed the depth of a culture and the ringing notes of an 
eloquence which made one deeply grieved for its loss in the councils of 
the Nation. 

" And then his courageous cheerfulness ! In the most depressing mo- 
ments of the past and the present, after the defeat of Bull Run, or with 
the discouragements of later years, Mr. Brimmer still retained his faith 
in his country and her institutions, always contending that the threaten- 
ing moments were but passing clouds, — that our institutions were strong 
enough to stand them, that Civil Service rules and a more enlightened 
public opinion would bring us through ; and, in reply to some pessimis- 
tic word which perhaps might betray the longing for a return to older 
forms of government, he would sometimes ask if the perplexities that 
were facing the monarchies of Europe were less serious and less threat- 
ening than our own. 

" The wide range of his interests was backed by a princely liberality ; 
and if ever a man possessed true sanity of mind, with a deep sense of 
the proportion of things and of the juste milieu, that man was Mar- 
tin Brimmer. His wisdom seemed to be his most prominent character- 
istic, — wisdom linked to a temperament that may be truly called faultless, 
for I think I may safely say that no one ever saw the serenity of that 
temperament ruffled. Such was my experience in the intimate relation of 
nearly forty years ; such was the experience of those who knew him 
longer and better than I did. Nor do I feel that I have done full justice 
to that serenity without telling you what I think was its most remark- 
able feature. Other men have been strong and calm, but it was the calm- 
ness of great self-control ; with Mr. Brimmer it was not that, but in its 
place a cloudless serenity, apparently as unconscious as the mellow light 
of an autumn day. 

" In this rare combination of qualities lay the secret of Mr. Brimmer's 
influence, — an influence that followed him into every circle that he en- 
tered, whether public or private ; and even in these enfranchised days, 
when the voice of authority seems dead, Mr. Brimmer's voice was lis- 
tened to and his opinions accepted as no one's else I have ever known. 



And yet I greatly doubt if he ever willingly proffered his advice to any 
one ; but with what modesty, what diffidence it was given when asked 
for ! — and asked for it was by the highest and the humblest, each one 
feeling that they had in him a friend. Truly le moncle est mix gens 

" From youth Mr. Brimmer's health, if not delicate, was never vigor- 
ous ; and as the stress of life increased with years, those nearest him 
often felt that, with the unceasing calls upon him and his conscientious 
discharge of them, the sword was rapidly wearing out the scabbard. A 
severe fall on the pavement one wintry night, as he was returning from 
a meeting of citizens on the death of Phillips Brooks, gave the last blow 
to his already declining health. He lay senseless for hours, and al- 
though he seemed later to return to his usual activity, yet he never after- 
wards regained his former strength. As I sat by his coffin on that last 
sad day in Trinity Church, and looked back on his past, — that unselfish 
past, — I could not but feel that the old Adam with which so many of 
us have to struggle had long since died in him, and that while he had 
shared the common lot of trial and suffering, his inner life had been all 
Beaut} T and Peace! " 

For myself, I knew Mr. Brimmer so long and so well that I am 
most glad to pay this tribute to his memory, and yet not so well 
that I am able to speak as his intimate friend. Possibly for this 
reason, I may be able to measure the proportions of his character 
better than those who "saw him upon nearer view," for he was a 
man of even traits and fine proportions. Lord Mali on says : — 

" It has been justly remarked that of General Washington there are 
fewer anecdotes to tell than, perhaps, of any other great man on record. 
So equally framed were the features of his mind, so harmonious all 
its proportions, that no one quality rose salient above the rest. There 
were none of those chequered hues, none of those warring emotions, in 
which biography delights." 

As the observer sometimes fails to appreciate the size of a 
statue or a noble structure because all its parts are so well adapted 
to one another, so we sometimes do not fitly measure a noble life 
or character because we do not find one feature more conspicuous 
than another. In Johnsonian phrase, ' Because we miss the no- 
dosity of a Hercules, we do not see the vigor of an Apollo.' 

Mr. Brimmer was calm but determined, gracious and dignified, 
and courteous without any want of firmness. He saw the right, 


and approved it and followed it. He did not need to carry about a 
lantern to find or to show a true man. We all saw such a man 
wherever he went. His personal presence and aspect made his 
way among men easy and winning, since he had that — 

" Sweet, attractive kinde of grace, 
A full assurance given by lookes, 
Continuall comfort in a face, 
The lineaments of Gospell bookes." 

Of his intellectual character, " the constituent and fundamental 
principle was good sense, a prompt and intuitive perception of con- 
sonance and propriety." For those who knew him best and most 
closely shared his work for the community he cannot be replaced. 

Many, indeed, whom he served in his efforts to elevate their 
lives and to lift them into an atmosphere of cultured refinement, 
may not have known their debt to him. It is for us who did know 
it to recognize and acknowledge it, and to preserve the record of 
that acknowledgment. 

It was impossible not to like him, not to respect him, and not to 
confide in him. His interest in any good cause was steady and 
unremitting. Liberal as he was, wealth was his least valuable 
contribution to the community which he served and adorned, 
although it illustrated and facilitated his efforts to make himself 
useful and the world better for his having lived in it. 

" Loke who that is most vertuous alway, 
Prive and apert, and most entendeth ay 
To do the gentil dedes that he can, 
And take him for the gretest gentilman." 

Mr. Brimmer became a member of this Society 18 January, 1893. 
He died at his residence in Boston on the fourteenth day of Janu- 
ary, 1896. 

Numerous appreciative and discriminating tributes were paid to 
his memory by his associates of the various organizations in which 
he had served the public. 

He was the last representative of a name honored for more than 
a century in his native city, which began with Martin Brimmer, the 
" Protestant German came from Hanover," and has left to us dear 
and grateful memories and the undying influence of noble lives. 







Dr. Edward Wigglesworth died in Boston 23 January, 1896. 
He was born at No. 4 Franklin Place, Boston, 30 December, 1840. 
He went first to Miss Whitney's school, 1 then to the Chauncy Hall 
School, and finally to the Boston Latin School. He graduated at 
Harvard in the Class of 1861, of the sixth generation of Harvard 
graduates of the family of which he was a descendant, he being 
the fourth Edward Wigglesworth in this line of graduates. His 
descent was direct from Edward Wigglesworth, who was born in 
England, and came from Yorkshire to this country in 1638. 2 

Dr. Wigglesworth graduated from the Harvard Medical School 
in 1865. During his connection with the School he entered the 
army, enlisting as a private in 1862 in a nine-months regiment. 
Subsequently, on account of his having studied at the Medical 
School for a year, he was made hospital steward, and later, during 
the war, he went as a surgeon at the time when volunteer surgeons 
were called for, and served his country with untiring devotion and 
constant self-sacrifice. The next five years he spent in Europe 
studying, in Vienna, in Paris, and in London, his chosen specialty, 
Dermatology. He made a collection of the best and rarest books, 
the most perfect models and costly means of illustrating this sub- 
ject. He presented his models to the Harvard Medical School; 

1 Miss Susan Whitney died at Taunton, Massachusetts, 16 ^November, 1880, 
aged 80 years. Her school for boys and girls, in Boston, was kept in the base- 
ment of the First Church, in Chauncy Place. 

2 The line of descent from the emigrant ancestor was through the Rev. 
Michael (H. C. 1051). Prof. Edward (H. C. 1710), Prof. Edward (H. C. 1749), 
Thomas (II. C. 1793) ; aud Edward (II. C. 1822), — the father of our late associate. 


As/t/t # /tn/'fag-t/f/t/t fir 1 /// f//e 


and his library was always at the service of any one interested in 
Dermatology. On his return to this country, in the early seventies, 
there were but few exclusive practitioners in this branch of medi- 
cal practice. Feeling that Dermatology ought to be more widely 
recognized, he established a dispensary of his own for diseases of 
the skin, which he carried on, regardless of time and expense, until 
successful departments for the treatment of this class of diseases 
had been founded in the public institutions of Boston, and he was 
appointed head of the Department for Diseases of the Skin at the 
Boston City Hospital, — a position which he held to the day of his 
death. He was one of the instructors of the .Harvard Medical 
School for several years, impressing the students with his pains- 
taking earnestness, and instilling into their minds the absolute 
necessity of attention to details for the successful treatment of the 
complicated diseases of the skin. 

During these incessant and arduous labors, Dr. Wigglesworth 
was a frequent contributor to medical literature. He read a paper 
on Alopecia before the Massachusetts Medical Society in 1871, and 
contributed to the Archives of Dermatology, of which he was a 
founder, papers on Fibroma of the Skin, and on Sarcomata of the 
Skin, in 1875, and on Auto-inoculation of Vegetable Parasites, and 
on New Formations, in 1878. In the same year he also wrote on 
Faulty Innervation as a Factor in Skin Diseases, in the New 
York Hospital Gazette. In 1882, in conjunction with Dr. E. W. 
dishing, he published in the Archives of Dermatology a paper 
on Buccal Ulcerations of Constitutional Origin. In 1883 a com- 
munication of his on Purpura from Quinine was published in 
the Boston Medical and Surgical Journal; and in 1886 he de- 
livered the Annual Address before the American Dermatological 

During this time of continuous productive activity there was 
little medical work of general public importance to this commu- 
nity in which Dr. Wigglesworth was not a participant. His enthu- 
siastic labors in behalf of the Metric System are well known. He 
was one of the executive committee of the Boston Medical Library 
Association from its beginning, and did much towards its estab- 
lishment. He was one of the committee to raise the large sum of 
money necessary to establish the Harvard Medical School in its 
present admirable building. "He was very active in the early 


attempts at securing the registration of physicians, that the citi- 
zens of the State might be protected against quackery and extor- 
tion." As a member of the Health Department of the American 
Social Science Association, he spent years of faithful and persistent 
effort in promoting its unselfish objects. He never cared for gen- 
eral society, and was very seldom seen in it, so that he was not 
personally known to a large circle of acquaintances. He did 
not put himself forward, but was always retiring. Although 
not appearing to notice what was passing about him, very little 
escaped his observation. He was imaginative and of a nervous 
temperament, and took the keenest interest in his work for the 
public good, which he pursued with untiring energy. Of all 
shams or frauds of any description he was uncompromising in his 
condemnation. At the same time he was willing to hear both 
sides of a question, and showed himself always fair in his treat- 
ment of those who were opposed to him, if he thought they were 
honest in their convictions. 

Having ample means of his own, and being able to lead a life of 
leisure, had he wished it, Dr. Wigglesworth chose rather a career 
of great activity and incessant labor for the good of others. No 
one will ever know the amount and extent of his charities. I 
have no doubt that many discovered only after his death by whom 
they had been helped. 

There was no man more entertaining and agreeable as a com- 
panion at dinner, particularly with his intimates, among whom he 
felt no restraint, and could give free rein to his wit and humor. 

He married, 4 April, 1882, Mrs. Sarah Willard Frothingham, 
and had three children. The eldest, Mary, died in her second 
year. Two are living, Henrietta-Goddard and Edward. 

He was enrolled a member of this Society 20 March, 1893, and 
when his engagements permitted, showed his interest in our 
purposes by his attendance at our meetings. 







John Forrester Andrew was born in Hingham, Massachu- 
setts, 26 November, 1850. His first emigrant ancestor on the 
paternal side was Robert Andrew of Boxford, County of Suffolk, 
England, who settled in Rowley in 1656. His great-grandfather, 
John Andrew, was in early life a silversmith, and afterwards a 
successful merchant of Salem ; late in life he moved to Windham, 
a small town near Portland, Maine, where he died. His son 
Jonathan was born in Salem where he lived until manhood, when 
he too went to Windham and kept there a country store. In this 
business he was successful, and he was an influential citizen. He 
married Nancy Green Pierce, who was a teacher in the academy at 
Fryeburg. Upon his wife's death, he sold his property in Wind- 
ham and removed to a farm in Boxford, Massachusetts. John 
Albion Andrew, his eldest son, born in Windham, was graduated 
from Bowdoin College in 1837. He married Eliza Jones, daughter 
of Charles and Eliza (Jones) Hersey of Hingham. His career as 
a reformer, statesman, and "War Governor" of Massachusetts 
needs no rehearsal here. The estimate made of Governor An- 
drew's character by Mr. Parke Godwin, in a Memorial Address, 
shows the source of leading characteristics in his son. The father's 
moral qualities were the son's evident inheritance. 1 

John Forrester Andrew was a pupil at the Phillips Grammar 
School, Boston, and fitted for college at a Boston private school. 
He was graduated from Harvard College in 1872. In college, he 
was a fair student but not greatly devoted to his books, neither 

1 John Forrester Andrew was descended from the Higginson, Pickering, 
Grafton, Otis, Cushing, and other prominent New England families. 


was lie very prominent in the general college life. His frank 
nature, quiet wit, pleasant manners, and good fellowship, however, 
won him general regard. After graduation, he passed a year 
travelling in Europe, and on his return entered the Harvard Law 
School, where he was graduated in 1875. He was for one year a 
law student in the office of Brooks, Ball, and Storey, and the in- 
timacy there formed with Mr. Moor field Storey had no little influ- 
ence upon his later political career. 1 September, 1876, he began 
the practice of his profession, and was associated then, as he was 
throughout his life, with Mr. Albert Boyd Otis, who had been 
connected with Governor Andrew in his law practice. 

In 1880, Andrew was elected as a Republican Representative to 
the Legislature from the Ninth Ward of Boston. As a member of 
the Republican party he served three successive terms in the 
House of Representatives, and one term as State Senator. He 
was elected to this last office by the largest majority ever received 
by any candidate in the district. As Senator, and when in full 
standing as a Republican, his personal independence and his con- 
tempt for partisan legislation were shown by his votes against the 
Aldermanic District and the Metropolitan Police Bills. He had 
voted as Representative to abolish the poll tax as a prerequisite 
for voting. At that time it required no little strength of convic- 
tion to vote in this manner, although few are found to-day who do 
not see the wisdom of abolishing that source of political corrup- 
tion. He was a member of the Judiciary Committee of both 
branches of the Legislature, a member of the Committee on the 
Revision of the Statutes in 1881, a member of the Committee on 
Expediting Business in 1882, and a member of the Committee on 
Bills in the Third Reading and Election Laws during his term of 
service, and also Chairman of the Committee on Street Railwaj-s. 
He introduced the bill establishing a Civil Service Commission 
while Senator in 1884, by which the partisan use of public office 
has been to some extent checked in this State. In the same year 
he made the motion to abolish the custom of preaching the Election 
Sermon, which was favorably acted upon by the Legislature. In 
order to divorce the Church and State still further, he introduced 
a bill to repeal the law providing that an atheist's disbelief in God 
shall affect his credibility as a witness, and he also presented a peti- 
tion to repeal the law exempting Church property from taxation. 


In spite of the independence he had shown in the General Court, 
Andrew was sent as a delegate to the National Republican Con- 
vention at Chicago. He was one of the small group who strenu- 
ously sought to prevent the nomination of Blaine. I met him 
shortly after his return from Chicago. He was quiet and uncom- 
municative. His willingness to express his own views was 
obviously controlled by his sense of formal responsibility to his 
constituents. He assured me, however, that he would not support 
Blaine. Not long after this he had thrown aside the fiction that 
the caucus binds its members, a belief which could not long have 
held at such a juncture a man of his character, and he enthusias- 
tically joined the Independent movement. His first public an- 
nouncement of this step was made in an interview published 
18 July in which he said : — 

"There is to-day no great issue between the two great politi- 
cal parties. The main questions, in which everybody is interested, 
are reform of the Civil Service, reform of the Tariff, and reform in the 
Currency, and I regard any one of them as safe in the hands of the 
Democratic as of the Republican party. I do not believe that under 
the present leaders, the Republican party can stand for the principles 
of honesty, progress, and reform upon which the party was originally 
founded. As at present constituted it simply presents an organization 
struggling to perpetuate its own existence. It seems to me that the 
country would be safer under the Governor of New York than it would 
be under Mr. Blaine. Without considering any of the rumors as to 
Mr. Blaine's personal character, a recent utterance of his in relation to 
the distribution of the surplus revenue, a proposition outrageous as well 
as unconstitutional, shows that he is not fit to hold the office which he 

No Massachusetts man in this movement sacrificed for the sake 
of his conscience a more immediate opportunity for political ad- 
vancement than did Andrew. He had been suggested as the 
probable Congressional candidate of the Republican party in his 
district ; indeed, when assured by a leading Republican politician 
soon after Blaine's nomination that if he would support the party 
ticket he could without doubt receive the Republican nomination 
in the Fifth District, he replied, "I should very much like to go 

to Congress, but I can't afford to pay that price for it." As with 



his father, "politics with him was a science of truth," and "his sin- 
cerity always identified him with his cause." 1 Andrew's cause was 
not that of his own personal preferment. He held other issues to 
be of minor importance in comparison with sustaining high ideals 
of public life as the basis of all that is worth fighting for in our 
political institutions. Andrew was chosen President of the Young 
Men's Republican and Independent Club of Boston, an organization 
which performed the duties of a City Committee. 2 To his energy, 
acuteness, and ability was due not a little of the success which at- 
tended the labors of that body. 

When Carl Schurz made his memorable speech of 22 October, 
1884, in Tremont Temple, Andrew was one of the speakers in the 
adjoining Meionaon. A part of his speech was as follows: — 

" For myself I have never voted anything but the Republican ticket, 
and in that I differ from many of the Republican advocates in this State ; 
but if I live until the fourth day of November next, I shall cast my first 
vote for a Democratic President, and vote for Grover Cleveland of New 
York, for I believe that he has shown, in the important public offices in 
which he has been placed, that he can be an honest, able, and fearless 
executive officer, while the Republicans, in choosing a candidate twice 
rejected on account of his damaged political character, have disgraced 
their party and insulted the integrity of the American people. It is not 
an agreeable thing to leave the party in which you have been born and 
in which you hoped always to live, but when the question comes between 
mere party success and the existence of honest government, then every 
true citizen will stand by his country and let his party look to itself." 

Andrew was nominated in 1884 for the State Senate by a non- 
partisan Address indorsed by the Democrats. His refusal to 
support the Republican candidate for President had excited much 
bitterly partisan comment in the Republican press, yet in spite of 
such opposition he was elected by 1400 majority in a district which 

1 Memorial address on Governor John A. Andrew, by Parke Godwin. 

2 The Officers of the Young Men's Republican and Independent Club of 
Boston were as follows : — 

President, John F. Andrew; Vice-Presidents, Roger Wolcott, Francis Leeds, 
Henry W. Putnam, Lewis R. Tucker, and Henry H. Edes; Secretary, John T. 
Wheelwright; Assistant-Secretary, Francis C. Lowell; Treasurer, Arthur L. 


only a Republican had previously represented. He had been pre- 
viously urged to accept an Independent nomination as candidate 
for Congress against Edward D. Hayden, but he replied that he 
was "interested in defeating a corrupt candidate for the Presi- 
dency, not in opposing a good man for Congress." He early began 
his championship of a sound currency resting upon a gold basis 
when in the State Senate of 1885 he offered a resolution, which 
was defeated, encouraging the Massachusetts representatives in 
Congress to advocate the passage of the necessary laws to prevent 
the free coinage of silver under the Bland Act. 

In 1885, Andrew was a member of the Municipal Reform Asso- 
ciation, by whose endeavors the Boston City Charter was revised 
and all executive powers taken from the City Council and given 
to the Mayor. In 1884, he had introduced in the Senate a bill 
providing that, in cities of a population greater than 75,000, de- 
partment officers should be appointed by the Mayor and Aldermen 
without any reference to boards of Councilmen. This anticipated 
in part the Revised Charter legislation of 1885, which was framed 
to prevent the mischievous interference with executive business by 
Committees of the Boston City Council. 

In 1886, Mr. Andrew was invited by the Democratic State Com- 
mittee to be their candidate for Governor. He at first refused to 
consider the proposition, but when the invitation was renewed, he 
referred the committee to Mr. Moorfield Storey, with whom he 
had in the meantime consulted. The result of this conference was 
that he consented to be the candidate of the Democratic party for 
Governor upon condition that the party platform should indorse, 
in an unqualified manner and to his satisfaction, reform of the 
Civil Service and the Tariff. This agreement was made, and he 
was nominated as the Democratic candidate for Governor upon a 
platform thoroughly satisfactory to the Independents, even if it 
was accepted with hesitation by many of the Democratic politicians. 
The result of the canvass was a surprise even to many of the tariff 
reformers. This was the first time the Tariff Reform issue had 
been pressed as a demand for free raw materials anywhere in the 
country, and the first time such an issue in the Bay State had 
been made the particular object of concerted political action by men 
of standing, education, and property. Andrew ran many thousand 
votes ahead of the general Democratic ticket, and was defeated by 


a plurality of but 9,500, Robinson, the Republican candidate of 
the previous year, having been elected by 22,000 plurality. 

The principal work of this campaign, as far as the canvass for 
the head of the ticket was concerned, fell upon a volunteer Inde- 
pendent Committee. The campaign was somewhat advanced when 
at a meeting of this Committee certain members reported that 
many Republicans, dissatisfied with the nominee of their party for 
the Governorship, would probably support Andrew if the Tariff 
issue were not so vigorously pressed. Andrew's closest friends 
upon the Committee strenuously opposed such a change of attitude, 
taking the ground that much as they wished Andrew's success, 
their object was not to advance his political career except as an 
incident to the cause of which he was the standard bearer. They 
declared that if the Committee should take a less positive stand on 
the Tariff question, they would do no further work in the canvass. 
The vote was not pressed. Andrew was perfectly contented with 
the position of his friends, which had been taken without consult- 
ing him. The following quotation from Andrew's letter of ac- 
ceptance of the Democratic nomination for Governor epitomizes 
his opinions on the questions of the day : — 

" The intelligence of the Nation, irrespective of political parties, 
heartily supports the earnest efforts of President Cleveland to divorce 
the Civil Service from politics ; to reduce the Tariff to the requirements 
of times of peace ; to lessen the burden of taxation ; and to prevent 
the coinage of a debased currency. These are the principles for which 
we contend, and Massachusetts, foremost in all reforms, is sure to give 
them her cordial support." 

An incident of this campaign which had an important effect 
upon Andrew's later political career was the formation of an 
active Tariff Reform Association in the Third Congressional 
District. This organization conducted an aggressive Free Raw 
Material campaign against the re-election to Congress of Am- 
brose A. Ranney. Leopold Morse, the Democratic nominee, in- 
dorsed by the Independents, was elected by a plurality of 1818. 1 

1 Andrew had early been urged by the Tariff Reformers to accept the Con- 
gressional nomination, but it was decided by him and those whom he consulted 
that the general cause could be pushed more advantageously if he were the 
candidate for the Governorship on a platform supporting the reforms which he 
especially sought to advance. 


The Third District organization was of the most informal charac- 
ter, but it was made up of active men of strong convictions. This 
organization played an important part in the politics of this State 
until the re-districting of 1892 threw its members into three 
different Congressional districts. 

In 1887, it was evident that there was much discontent with 
Cleveland's administration among certain leaders of his party, and 
that the State Convention would take an antagonistic position in 
regard to Civil Service Reform and the Administration. Andrew 
therefore declined to be a candidate for a second nomination for 
Governor. 1 Like most Independents, he took no active part in the 
contest between Ames and Lovering. 

In 1888, Andrew was the Democratic candidate for Congress in 
the Third District. His opponent was Alanson W. Beard. The 
canvass was very hot. Andrew and his supporters felt that the 
indirect effect of the work done in this important city District 
would be influential in forming an amalgamated Democratic and 
Independent party in the State. Never before was the idea of 
broadside advertisement in the daily papers, especially in those 
of the opposite party, carried so far. These broadsides' were not 
merely campaign reviews of the qualities that made Andrew a 
desirable candidate, but carefully prepared explanations of the 
principles which the candidate supported were thus published in 
easily-read type. Thousand of circulars were sent through the 
mails. Many canvassers and workers at the polls were employed 
on election day, but further than this a very large, if not an 
equal number of volunteer workers, men of standing in the 
community, and fully inspired by the principles that led their 
candidate, labored assiduously before and on election day for 
the success of the ticket. The result was a great surprise to 
the Republicans. The one bright spot for the Independents of 
Massachusetts in the contest of 1888 was the election of Andrew 
to Congress. 

Andrew's position on the tariff question is well stated in the 

1 During his absence in Europe in the summer of this year he was men- 
tioned as the probable Democratic candidate, and as he had authorized Mr, 
Moorfield Storey to decline for him in case his nomination was seriously consid- 
ered, Mr. Storey did so in an open letter to Hon. P. A. Collins, then the Chair- 
man of the Democratic State Committee. 


following extract from a speech delivered in this campaign at a 
rally in Tremont Temple, 27 October, 1888 : — 

" That we have an issue to-day is due to the courage of our patriotic 
President. The great question is the revision of the Tariff and the 
reduction of the revenue. It is estimated that $110,000,000 will be 
taken the coming year by taxation from the earnings of the people, not 
one dollar of which is required for expenses of the government, but it 
is collected solely for the purpose of making a few rich monopolists 
richer. This great revenue was needed in the time of war, but it is an 
outrage in the time of peace. The new Republican party of to-day, 
which found it necessary to admit that it sympathized with morality, 
declares that rather than touch the present Tariff it would repeal the 
entire revenue tax, including the tax on whiskey and tobacco. We 
believe in helping the people to more employment, rather than to more 
whiskey ; to cheaper food rather than to cheaper tobacco. If there is 
any advantage from the Tariff the employer gets it, and not the working- 
man. Inventive skill, education, the hopeful ambition of our working- 
men, and the general diffusion of intelligence, make American labor 
the most valuable on earth, while the vast area of fertile lands inviting 
every kind of productive activity increases our prosperity. People who 
once stood for human freedom at whatever cost of life or treasure, 
simply because it was right, will ever stand for freedom from unjust 
extortions of monopolists and the denial to man of his rightful oppor- 
tunities. The intelligence and conscience of the country won a victory 
twenty-five years ago ; they will again speak for freedom and equality 
in November next." 

Before passing to an account of Andrew's services during his 
first term in Congress, mention should be made of those as Park 
Commissioner of Boston, to which office he was first appointed 11 
May, 1885. In February, 1886, Andrew was reappointed and con- 
firmed for the term of three years from 1 May of that year. He 
served out the term and held over until his successor, Col. Thomas 
L. Livermore, was confirmed, 13 May, 1889, Andrew having been 
elected to Congress at the previous election. When Andrew first 
entered on the duties of this office, the project of establishing a 
system of Parks for Boston had scarcely passed beyond the initial 
stage. The sites of six Parks had been secured, but their con- 
struction had barely begun, except in the case of that called the 
Back Bay Fens, which was about half finished. Not only had little 



been done, but there was small prospect of doing more. The 
Legislature had established a tax rate and debt limit which left but 
slight opportunities for securing money to extend the system or 
to improve the ground already obtained. The work would have 
suffered accordingly had not the Commission inaugurated the 
policy of carrying it on by long term loans outside of the debt 
limit. This measure, which was ably advocated and successfully 
carried out by the Board, and in which Andrew took an active 
part, has been chiefly instrumental in developing the Park System 
in a progressive and comprehensive manner. The extension of the 
Marine Park over tide-water lands belonging to the Commonwealth 
was secured, and the addition of Castle Island, belonging to the 
United States, was successfully advocated by Mr. Andrew and 
Joseph H. O'Neil. Plans for connecting the Marine Park with the 
city were adopted, and funds for this purpose and for extending 
the main Park System from the Fens to Jamaica Pond were 

In the Fifty-first Congress Andrew soon won for himself an 
influential position by his nice tact, his sincerity, and his knowl- 
edge of men and public affairs. Although no orator, he became 
one of the recognized leaders of the honest-money Democrats in 
the House. Through the efforts of those Republicans and Demo- 
crats who believed in sound money, united up to this time, the 
passage of the bill for the absolute free coinage of silver at a ratio 
of 16 to 1 was prevented. Andrew and his honest-money Demo- 
cratic colleagues voted against all silver legislation, and if the ten 
Republican Congressmen from Massachusetts had voted with equal 
steadiness the Sherman Silver Purchase Act would never have 
been passed. The first Silver Bill, the so-called Conger Bill, 
which passed the House where there was a Republican majority, 
was the basis of the Act of 14 July, 1890, — the Sherman 
Act. The Conger Bill had so small a majority that a change of 
ten votes would have prevented its passage. In speaking of this 
contest, Andrew told me that he had learned from the highest 
Republican authority that the sound-money men of the Republi- 
can party considered it necessary to vote for the Sherman Act, as 
it was feared that if this compromise were not accepted a free 
silver coinage bill might pass, as President Harrison would give 
no assurance that he would veto such a measure. 


In the autumn of 1891, in an interview on the currency ques- 
tion, Andrew said : — 

4 ' There never was a particle of danger of the passage of a free coin- 
age bill except from the Republican side of the House. The Republi- 
cans were making their bid for the votes of the new silver-mining States 
in the Presidential election of 1892. . . . When Speaker Reed was con- 
vinced that the P^astern Democrats meant to vote their convictions with- 
out scheming to embarrass the President, he allowed the question [of 
silver coinage] to come to a vote. He would not permit it to come to a 
vote a minute sooner, and he felt a deal of hesitation up to the last mo- 
ment, because he suspected us of acting from the same petty motives 
which governed the members of his own party. . . . The Eastern Demo- 
crats did not want free coinage, and they did not want silver inflation ; 
they voted against it at the expense of enabling Mr. Reed to claim for 
his party, as he and his friends are claiming, the credit of having de- 
feated free coinage. They did not initiate any of the legislation of the 
last Congress, and they never initiated a free coinage bill as a party 
measure or a measure of the Committee on Coinage while a Democratic 
Speaker sat in the chair, which was no sooner occupied by a Republican 
Speaker than silver inflation was adopted as the financial policy of the 

Andrew spoke and voted against the McKinley Bill. In his 
speech of 10 May, 1890, he said: — 

" Mr. Chairman, the Committee reporting the Bill say, 'We have not 
been so much concerned about the price of articles we consume as we 
have been to encourage a system of home production.' That they have 
not concerned themselves about the consumption is apparent to anyone, 
but under what principle of political economy they propose increasing 
the taxes upon established industries when the Government is not in 
need of additional revenue can be apparent to no one. One thing 
especially conspicuous in the bill is the marked success with which it 
absolutely ignores the interests of New England. That section of the 
country demands lower taxes upon the necessaries of life and cheaper 
raw materials to benefit their manufactures and give employment to their 
people. Instead of that they are offered, not only higher duties, but 
articles which have been free are now made to pay a duty. What New 
England wants the most has been denied her, and what she wants the 
least lias been forced upon her. The duties upon wool have been in- 
creased in spite of petitions from many of the largest manufacturers 
and dealers in wool, praying that wool may be free. Twenty-two years 


of high duties upon wool have failed to benefit the wool growers or the 
manufacturers, or to increase the wages of the operatives. Every 
country where wool manufactures come into competition with ours has 
the advantage of free wool. 

" That any one should seriously contemplate increasing the duty upon 
carpet wools seems incredible, yet this bill raises the duty 40 and even 
60 per cent. No duty, no matter how high, can cause carpet wool to be 
produced in the United States ; even on lands of Texas that cost noth- 
ing, it cannot be produced at a profit." 

He then proceeded to show how the iron industries of New Eng- 
land were adversely affected by duties upon iron ore, coal, and 
coke, and he presented a petition signed by 598 proprietors and 
managers of ironworking establishments, asking that these materials 
should be placed upon the free list, and that the duty on pig iron 
and scrap iron and steel should be restored to that which prevailed 
immediately before the war. He further said : — 

" When we see the prosperity of the cotton, paper, and leather indus- 
tries, and know that their raw materials are free, it does not seem un- 
reasonable that the manufacturer of wool and iron should desire free 
raw materials to revive their fallen industries. In asking to be relieved 
from oppressive taxes which are burdening the people, we are met with 
the declaration that we are ' free traders.' 

"There is to-day no party in the country which asks for or desires 
' free trade ; ' but if there is anything which will bring such a party into 
existence, it is the passage of a bill which aims not only to maintain a 
war tariff twenty-five years after the war for which it was created has 
ceased, but even to increase that tariff. A bill which adds to the duties 
upon established industries when the Government has more money than 
it needs, a bill which is to add to the burden of every citizen by increas- 
ing the cost of the necessities of life, a bill which is to deprive the 
manufacturer of his raw material and which deprives the farmer of an 
opportunity of selling his surplus product, if it is to meet the approval 
of the intelligence of the country, must have some stronger argument 
than mere party expediency or a desire to pay political obligations." 

When the Conference Report on the McKinley Bill was being 
forced through the House, Andrew made another speech in which 
he said, quoting from Blaine : — 

" The United States has reached the point where one of the highest 

duties is to enlarge the area of its foreign trade." 



Then, after quoting from Resolutions of the Merchants Association, 
and from an opinion of the Secretary of the Home Market Club, 
both favoring such legislation as would tend to increase the export 
trade of the country, he proceeded : — 

" This evidence from high Republican authorities shows that the pro- 
visions of this bill are absolutely antagonistic to the needs of the people. 
In order to allay opposition and to seem to meet the popular will, it is 
proposed to amend this Bill by adding a section which pretends to grant 
reciprocity of trade with foreign countries. The amendment provides 
that whenever the President finds the government of another country 
which produces sugars, molasses, coffee, tea, and hides, raw and un- 
cured, imposing duties upon American products, which he considers 
reciprocally unequal and unjust, it shall be his duty to tax those articles 
coming from that country. He must also suspend by Proclamation the 
provision which places these articles upon the Free List. It is safe to 
say that such extraordinary power has never in recent 3 7 ears been given 
by a free people to the Executive. We here permit the President, at his 
own discretion, to tax the property of individuals. Section 8 of Article 
I. of the Constitution of the United States provides that ' The Con- 
gress shall have power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts, and 
excises,' and nowhere is a provision to be found by which this power can 
be exercised by any one else. Neither has the President the power to 
make a treaty which this amendment would seem to imply that he had. 

'* The passage of this Bill must cause great uncertainty in business and 
great injury to any one engaged in dealing in hides, or the manufacture 
of leather, or trading in coffee or sugar. When any other government, 
no matter how insignificant it may be, imposes a duty upon any of these 
articles which the President ' deems to be reciprocally unequal and un- 
reasonable,' ' it shall be his duty ' to levy these taxes. What a condi- 
tion in which to place trade ! and how can any one engaged in it know 
what prices may be at any moment in any of these articles? Sugar 
coming from one country is free, while if imported from another coun- 
try it must pay a duty. Hides imported to-day may be free but if 
coming in to-morrow are taxed one and a half cents per pound, or free 
from one country and taxed if from another ! 

" Such government interference which no man at any time may guard 
against may destroy the most solvent merchant by the effect upon 

During the debate upon the Ship Subsidies Bill (27 February, 
1891), Andrew made a speech a part of which was as follows: — 


''Before taxing the entire community in order to subsidize a few 
shipbuilders and owners, before taking millions of money annually from 
the people in order to give a bounty to a few who are engaged in an un- 
profitable business, it would be better to examine into the cause of this 
unfortunate condition of our commerce and remove the evil, rather than 
impose upon the country an additional burden. 

"The iron industry of Massachusetts, once prosperous, is now almost 
extinct owing to our tariff laws. The largest concern in the State is 
about to put its plant into Illinois, yet it would not be considered wise 
legislation to give a bounty to any one going into the manufacture of 
iron. The State of Maine, with its magnificent harbors and convenient 
proximity to the coal and iron fields of the Provinces, should, under wise 
tariff laws, be a flourishing community ; but if the reports of the recent 
census are to be believed, there has been a falling off in the population 
of many of the counties in that State ; yet no one would advocate taxing 
the whole people to allow Maine to establish manufactures. Thirty 
years ago America was the equal of any country in its commerce. 
Then ships were made of wood and used sail ; to-day they are made of 
iron or steel and propelled by steam, but our flag is rarely seen upon 
the seas. If an American wishes to engage profitably in the foreign 
trade he must sail his ship under the flag of another country. It costs 
too much to build a ship in this country ; and a foreign-built ship 
cannot be registered here. The fact that the English ship can make 
money while the American does not, cannot be due to the difference in 
wages of seamen in the two countries, because in the past, when we were 
able to compete with England, we paid our sailors higher wages. 

" England pays no duties upon the materials which go into the con- 
struction of her ships, and she allows her people to buy their ships in the 
cheapest market. This is also true of Germany and France, while 
America puts a heavy duty upon raw materials. In the case of struc- 
tural iron, the duty is 114 per cent ad valorem, and upon anchors and 
chains it amounts to 38 or 49 per cent ad valorem. . . . Many of the 
best informed experts in shipping believe that the true method to revive 
our commerce is not by subsidies, but by removing the oppressive taxes 
upon shipbuilding and allowing our people to buy ships where they can 
get them the cheapest." 

Tariff Reformers throughout New England looked to Andrew 
as their special representative in this Congress, and he presented 
many petitions for free wool and iron ore, and for reduced taxes 
on products of the farm. 


He opposed the admission to the Union of the " mining camp " 
States, fully appreciating the general inexpediency of such action 
and its menace to the cause of Honest Money. 

As a member of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, An- 
drew prepared a careful Report in favor of aiding European coun- 
tries in the suppression of the slave trade. In this Report he 
made public for the first time the Brussels Treaty which sought to 
stamp out that trade on the African coast. The final ratification 
of the treaty was due in no small measure to his exertions. 

As a member of the Committee on Civil Service Reform, Andrew 
again had opportunity to show his hearty support of the merit 
system as a measure of immediate necessity and practical impor- 

Andrew's second election to Congress, in 1890, was by the 
largest plurality ever given a Democratic candidate in the Third 
District. His opponent was Edward L. Pierce. The Democratic 
victories that year in Massachusetts exceeded the expectations of 
the most sanguine supporters of Cleveland's policy. Six other 
Democratic Congressmen were elected ; and William E. Russell 
was chosen Governor of Massachusetts for the first time. 

In the Fifty-second Congress we find Andrew again the wise, 
sturdy and sincere supporter of Tariff Reform, Honest Money, and 
Civil Service Reform, and strenuously opposing all proscriptive legis- 
lation directed against particular races of men. He could well say 
with his father, " I know not what record of sin awaits me in the 
other world, but this I know that I was never mean enough to 
despise a man because he was ignorant, or because he was poor, or 
because he was black." He opposed the Chinese Exclusion Act, 
voting against the majority of his own party, and he was one of 
three members of the Committee on Foreign Affairs who refused 
to sign the provision in the Conference Report requiring " credible 
white witnesses." He also proposed a bill to repeal so much of the 
Exclusion Act as prevents persons of African descent from becom- 
ing witnesses in a court of law. He showed his independence of 
the Democratic party whip by being one of the few of that party 
who voted against the Anti-Option Bill. 

During his second term in Congress, Andrew maintained his 
stout battle for more enlightened tariff laws. On the first bill-day 
he introduced bills to make raw wool, iron ore, and tin plate free of 


duty, and in a later measure sought especially to except hides from 
the list of articles on which the President was authorized, under 
the reciprocity clause, to levy duties upon his own judgment, with- 
out special act of Congress. He also introduced a bill to repeal 
the bounty on sugar given by the McKinley Tariff Act and 
sought to carry out by another bill the wishes of the Boston 
Associated Board of Trade in regard to the repeal of certain 
crudities and oppressive provisions of the McKinley Administra- 
tive Act. 

The Free Ship Bill, drawn by the Hon. John M. Forbes, was 
also introduced by Andrew. 

While he never concealed his opinion on any public matter, and 
while he frankly expressed his judgment on men and affairs, 
Andrew never made enemies in so doing. He won the confidence 
of men whose ideas were most divergent from his own. He always 
respected the individuality of other men, and they in turn respected 
his. There was nothing of the Pharisee in his nature. " Andrew 
was an almost universal favorite," says a close observer of Wash- 
ington affairs, "and was one of the men whose straightforward 
sincerity and lack of partisan feeling gained him almost as much 
influence on one side of the House as on the other." The high 
regard in which he was held by all factions of the Democratic 
Congressmen is shown by the fact that he was one of the few men 
who opposed the nomination of Mr. Crisp for Speaker of the 
House who were appointed by him to chairmanships of impor- 
tant committees. He was re-appointed a member of the Com- 
mittee on Foreign Affairs, and he was made Chairman of the 
Committee on Civil Service Reform, of which he was a member in 
the Fifty-first Congress. 

Of his work upon the last-named Committee, Mr. Theodore 
Roosevelt says : — 

"Better than any words I could write for a Memoir is what I have 
already said about Mr. Andrew in my article on Civil Service Reform in 
the August (1895) Scribner. It was written, of course, before I knew 
of his sad death. He combined courage, principle, and common-sense, 
and this made him a literally invaluable ally, for he was both disinter- 
ested and effective. He was the best Chairman of a Civil Service Com- 
mittee that we have ever had in the House of Representatives since the 
present Civil Service Reform Law went into effect." 


Next in importance to Andrew's work for the maintenance of an 
honest currency was that which he did as chairman of this Com- 
mittee. He was a sincere believer in the reform of the civil ser- 
vice, and contrary to the opinion of not a few avowed advocates of 
the cause, he felt that however valuable were the rules governing 
the Civil Service, as a check upon the use of the appointing power 
for personal or party ends, and however useful such rules might 
be in forming public opinion to recognize and to oppose such 
demoralizing use of power, the people should be taught by the 
example of those in authority that the Civil Service could be re- 
formed without rules if their public servants did not take improper 
advantage of the power intrusted to them. A worthy official, even 
if not protected by Civil Service Rules, could not, with his approval, 
be supplanted by a partisan "worker." 

One of the members of the Civil Service Reform Committee of 
the Fifty-second Congress 1 says: — 

" He [Andrew] was prominently the working, active member of the 
Committee. I did not consider the Committee at the outset very warmly 
for the Reform, but Mr. Andrew succeeded in obtaining two of the strong- 
est Reports that ever came from the Committee, and of the most sweep- 
ing character : one authorizing the registration of laborers in every 
department of the Government under reform rules, and the other pro- 
viding for the choice of fourth-class postmasters according to the merit 

The two Bills above referred to and reported by Andrew as 
Chairman of this Committee, proposed to more than treble the 
number of officials then under the Civil Service Rules. There 
were at that time about 36,000 employees protected by these rules. 
By the Bill " to exclude political influence in the employment of 
laborers " he sought to make merit the test for such employment 
in the Navy Yards and in the public works of the United States. 
This measure was indorsed by the Federation of Labor and by the 
Knights of Labor of the District of Columbia, where the actual 
workings of the merit system had been tested in the gun factory. 
It was said to have been through Andrew's co-operation with the 

1 Hon. Scott Wike, now Assistant Secretary of the Treasury, in an inter- 
view published in Boston Herald, 1 June, 1895. 


representatives of organized Labor that the People's party in 1892 
declared as one of its principles, — 

" Should the government enter upon the work of owning and manag- 
ing all railroads, we should favor an Amendment to the Constitution by 
which all persons engaged in the government service shall be placed 
under a Civil Service Regulation of the most rigid character." 

His most important work for Civil Service Reform was the Bill 
which was framed and presented by him, to regulate the appoint- 
ment of Fourth-Class Postmasters. The Report made by his Com- 
mittee on this measure was a strong, frank, and most effective 
criticism of the Spoils System. This measure did not then 
become law, nor has this reform yet been established. It differed 
in its provisions, but not in its principles, from those of the later 
De Forest Report approved in 1896 by President Cleveland. 1 

Andrew was one of the few members of the Fifty-second Con- 
gress who voted against the Dependent and the Mexican Pension 
Bills. His many kindnesses to veterans and his interest in the 
Grand Army Post which bore his father's name show his regard 
for the soldiers of the war, but he was too straightforward and 
patriotic to stoop to coddling them by indiscriminate government 
bounty or by special privileges. 

In the Honest-Money contest of the Fifty-second Congress the 
good work done by those who had the gift of oratory placed them 
prominently in the public eye, and but few knew of the quiet but 
equally effective service done by Andrew in making converts for 
Sound Money in a House where every vote was needed. In the 
opinion of his colleague and intimate friend, the Hon. Sherman 
Hoar, Andrew was the only member of Congress who is known to 
have made converts and won votes from the opposition. Mr. Crisp 
said to Mr. Hoar that Andrew was one of the few men he had ever 
met who had this power. Andrew knew with unfailing instinct 
whether a man was open to conviction. When he believed that he 
had found a possible convert to any cause he never was known to 
discuss the subject with him before a third person. He was inde- 

1 The re-organization of the Fourth-Class Postmasterships in accordance with 
the recommendations of the De Forest Report could not be accomplished, as 
the Fifty-fourth Congress refused to grant the requisite transfer of appropria- 
tions requested by Postmaster-General Wilson. 


fatigable in working against the free coinage of silver, and it was 
largely through his efforts that the honest-money contingent of the 
Democratic party was increased, and held, to the number of seventy, 
whereby the Senate Free Silver Bill, on 13 Jul\, 1892, was de- 
feated by a majority of eighteen. 

It was true of Andrew, as Parke Godwin said of his father, that — 

" inflexibly honest in his own convictions, his sincerity always iden- 
tified him with his cause ; while his kindliness and justness won him the 
respect of those who hated his cause. This was because he worked by 
persuasion, not blows ; by the persuasions of argument and character, 
and not force." 

As a consequence of his labors during the long hot summer of 
1891, he was stricken with a malarial illness. His wife, 1 who was 
most thoroughly sympathetic with his ideas and ambitions, died 
the following autumn. One who knew him in Washington, says 
that this illness and — 

" the death of his wife left him in a changed condition, from which, 
in the opinion of his closest friends, he never fully recovered. He did 
not seem himself during the remainder of his Congressional career, and 
while he continued to do some of his best work, it was with the indif- 
ferent air of a man for whom the joy of living had ended." 

The political situation in 1888 was such that it is surprising 
that Andrew should have been that year elected to Congress as a 
Tariff Reformer. His personal popularity and the confidence he 
inspired by his public life, together with the fine organization of 
the Tariff Reformers of the Third Congressional District, explains 
his election. 

In the campaigns of 1888 and 1889 in Massachusetts the Tariff 
issue was strongly pressed by the Democratic candidate for the 
Governorship, William E. Russell, and the other leaders of the 
young Democracy. The result of the canvass of 1887 had a good 
effect. The Independents and Democrats who had not been influ- 
ential in the party councils of the previous year were allowed to 
have a candidate and a platform which they could enthusiastically 
support. These campaigns were truly, as they were intended, cam- 

1 Mr. Andrew married 11 October, 1883, Harriet, daughter of Nathaniel and 
Cornelia (Van Rensselaer) Thayer of Boston. She died 16 September, 1891, 
leaving two daughters, Cornelia-Thaver, and Elizabeth. 


paigns of education, and the seed sown in these years bore aston- 
ishing fruit in 1890. In that year the disappointment of many 
voters with the attitude of the Republicans in regard to the Tariff 
and Silver questions, the attempted passage of the Force Bill, 
the passage of the Dependent Pension Bill, and the other ex- 
travagances by which the Republican party sought to remove the 
menace to Protection of a surplus revenue, brought specific 
examples to the voters' minds of the dangers which the New 
Democracy had theoretically pointed out in the discussions of 
previous years. The results of the election surprised even those 
most confident of success. 

In the re-districting of Massachusetts in 1891 many of the 
Democratic members of the Legislature were deceived by the 
extent of the victory of 1890, and some were disinclined to en- 
courage the growth of Mugwump influence in the State. They 
were therefore easily managed by their more astute Republican 
colleagues. The Democrats consented to a division of the dis- 
tricts based on the abnormally large Democratic vote of the previ- 
ous year, and also with the intention of making a second " safe " 
Democratic district. The effective organization of the Indepen- 
dents in the Ninth District and the well-nigh perfect organization 
in the Third District were thus broken up. The Third District 
voters were divided among three newly constituted districts. This 
action was taken in spite of the protest of all the Independent 
leaders in those districts whose advice was asked. The Indepen- 
dent organization in Massachusetts was thus practically destroyed. 

When Andrew returned, in 1892, to make his third canvass for 
Congress, honored as he was for his work for Tariff, Civil Service, 
and Currency Reform, in a year when the Massachusetts Republi- 
cans had determined to spare no endeavor to regain their lost 
supremacy in this State, he had to contest, in a Presidential year, a 
new District with a normal Republican majority of about 2,000. 

The Address indorsing Andrew's candidacy for re-election was 
signed by many of the most prominent men of the District, but 
the impression prevails that in this canvass he lost the aid of some 
of his leading supporters in past campaigns, because, through the 
change of district lines, many of these men were no longer in his 
District — a fact overlooked by many persons. His campaign was 
conducted with ability and thoroughness. The defection in the 



Democratic wards of Cambridge, to which in no small measure his 
defeat was due, sprang from causes honorable to him and to his 
managers. Much campaign capital was made by Andrew's oppon- 
ents of his refusal to meet the Republican candidate in joint debate. 
Although in no wise pretending to be an orator, Andrew was quick 
at repartee, and if his health had permitted he would have ac- 
quitted himself creditably in such a contest. As one of his closest 
friends writes, — 

" It was want of health and not want of courage that caused him to 
decline this debate. He told me at the time what his doctor said, but 
was averse to holding himself out as a sick man." 

He never fully recovered from the effects of the malarial illness 
which he contracted while fighting for Honest Money during the 
long session of the summer of 1891. Samuel W. McCall, his 
opponent, was elected by a plurality of 992. Andrew, although 
greatly disappointed at this check to his public career, bore his 
defeat manfully. 

On his return to Washington for the short session of the Fifty- 
second Congress, immediately before the inauguration of President 
Cleveland, he introduced a Bill for the practical repeal of the Sher- 
man Silver Purchase Act. 1 He was among the first to suggest that 
this Bill should be referred to the Banking Committee, which had 
a Sound Money majority, instead of the Coinage Committee, which 
had a majority of silver men. During this legislative contest, 
Andrew was in constant consultation with Senator Carlisle, and 
through him and others with President-elect Cleveland. The Bill 
was introduced on the first bill-day in the House, and it was a 
measure that fully represented the wishes of the . New York and 
Boston Chambers of Commerce, and numerous other commercial 
bodies which had denounced the Sherman Act. By this Bill, An- 
drew did not propose to repeal the whole of the Act, as that would 
have revived the Bland Act of 1878, which provided for the monthly 
coinage of $2,000,000 in silver. If the Republican members from 
sound-money States had voted in accordance with the wishes of 

1 This Bill proposed the increase of circulation of National Banks to the par 
value of the bonds held to secure it, the repeal of the tax on circulation, and 
the reduction of the bond deposits ; also the repeal of the Sherman Silver Pur- 
chase Act. 


their constituents the Bill would not have been defeated. With this 
endeavor to ward off financial disaster, Andrew's career in national 
politics ended. 

In July, 1894, he was again appointed Park Commissioner of 
Boston by Mayor Matthews. This position, he said, was " the only 
municipal office he had any desire to fill." Upon the resignation of 
Mr. Charles F. Sprague, who had been elected to the State Senate, 
Andrew became Chairman of the Board, and held that position at 
the time of his death. 

During Andrew's second term as Park Commissioner, additional 
land for the extension of the Arnold Arboretum was acquired by 
agreement with Harvard College, including in this unique public 
property (which already contained Bussey Hill), the higher reaches 
of Peter's Hill, and increasing its area from one hundred and fifty- 
five to two hundred and twenty-five acres. In conjunction with 
the Metropolitan Park Commission, a parkway extending from 
the Arboretum to Bellevue Hill, connecting the Boston Park Sys- 
tem with the Metropolitan Parks at the Stony Brook Reservation, 
was also secured. He favored re-foresting the Harbor Islands, — a 
plan, which, if carried out, would have added greatly to the beauty 
of the Bay, — and he recommended the establishment of playgrounds 
and open-air gymnasiums in different parts of the city. 

Andrew was an advocate of the policy of placing Commonwealth 
Avenue under the control of the Park Commission, which was 
brought about just before the beginning of his second term. Gen- 
eral Walker, in speaking of Andrew's work as Park Commissioner, 
said : — 

"He was a consistent friend of Civil Service Reform both in theory 
and practice, and stood up stiffly for protecting the Parks against the 
encroachment of labor organizations, evangelical associations, and other 
parties desiring to use them for the purpose of propagandism." 

Andrew opposed the placing of the Park Police under the charge 
of the Police Commissioners, as an action unjustified by probable 
improvement in the discipline of the force, and not to be reconciled 
with holding the Park Commissioners responsible for the control of 
the Parks. 

The fears that Andrew entertained of unsatisfactory results 
from the abnormal Democratic majority in the Fifty-third Congress 
were realized. He thought that the Southern congressmen had 


not acted in good faith towards the Democrats of the East in forc- 
ing the Income-Tax provision upon the Tariff Bill. He was thor- 
oughly dissatisfied with the result of the reform movement of a 
decade, and he saw clearly that, although something had been 
gained by placing wool, lumber, and salt upon the free list, the 
disappointment felt by the conscientious and thoughtful people of 
the country at the pettiness and incapacity shown in Congress 
would long postpone the probability of rallying any considerable 
portion of the rank and file of the Republican party to the support 
of the principles he had so much at heart. He believed that the 
votes of many Republicans were needed to replace those of Demo- 
crats who would leave that party through discontent with those 
acts of President Cleveland which most commended that leader to 
the Independents. 

" It is a shame,'* Andrew, in substance, said to me shortly after 
the passage of the Tariff Bill of the Fifty-third Congress. " We 
have spent our money, our best energies, our thought and enthu- 
siasm in seeking to put the public affairs of this country upon a 
more honest and better basis, only to have our work undone by a 
group of miserable jobbers." 

When in 1894 public opinion turned in favor of the Republican 
party, Andrew was surprised only at the magnitude of the reac- 
tion. Most Independents sympathized with him in feeling no dis- 
appointment at the result of the election that year. Considered 
as a whole, Andrew thought this expression of public opinion a 
just rebuke to the Democratic party for the misuse they had made 
of their power in spite of the President's protests. He said at this 
time that he should have had a poor opinion of the intelligence of 
the American people if they had elected a Democratic Congress that 
year. He confidently expected, however, that no better, even if as 
satisfactory results would come from the large Republican majority 
of the succeeding Congress. 

Throughout his public career, Andrew opposed all invasion of 
local self-government. He introduced the Bill to increase the 
power and responsibility of Mayors, in which the first step was taken 
in Massachusetts towards Municipal Reform. He voted against all 
laws prohibiting the sale of intoxicating liquors. 1 

1 A Constitutional Prohibitory Amendment was presented by the Republi- 
cans, in 1SSG, for popular vote. Andrew said in a speech of this campaign in 



He opposed and sought to repeal laws bred of religious bigotry. 
He condemned all legislation proscriptive of race. 

As laws making for bad citizenship, he opposed the poll tax as a 
prerequisite of voting, and the taxation of personal property. He 
combated legislation which gave especial privileges to individuals 
or to classes and associations of individuals. No extravagant 
pension bills had his support. He opposed most of the so-called 
Labor Legislation. He was a bold, yet conservative advocate of 
Tariff Reform. Our restrictive navigation laws met his unflagging 
criticism and opposition. 

One of the most civilized measures passed by the Congress dur- 
ing recent years — the Act by which works of art are exempt 
from customs duty — was introduced by Andrew. 

If he had done no other service, his name should be gratefully 
remembered by all who hope to see a nobler public life developed 
in this country, on account of his work for Civil Service Reform. 

He introduced the first bill by which a general Civil-Service law 
was enacted in any State, and he was " the best Chairman of the 
Civil Service Committee" we have ever had in the House 
of Representatives. He was the first Congressman to attempt 
to place under Civil-Service rules the laborers and fourth-class 

All those who hope to see the country benefited by the assured 
retention of gold as our standard of value should recognize An- 
drew's unremitting and uncompromising work in the cause of 
Honest Money. Useful as was his public life, his most noteworthy 
work, so modestly and quietly done as to be unknown to most men, 
was when, by his tact and powers of personal persuasion, he added 
to the number of the Democratic opponents of silver coinage, and 
held them together to defeat the Senate Silver Bill of 1892. Few 
if any of his colleagues in Congress who knew what he did to this 
end would deny that a large share of the credit for the defeat of 
that measure was due to him. His friends knew that the work he 
did during this and the Fifty-first Congress broke his health and 
shortened his days. 

He came back from Washington in the spring of 1893 in a very 

regard to this prohibitory legislation: "We need no more laws; we should 
better enforce the laws we already have. An Act of the Legislature never yet 
made a man temperate." 


weak physical condition, and he did not recover, even in part, his 
normal strength until the summer of 1894. He then appeared to 
be in fairly good health, but he often suffered from severe head- 
aches. He was very careful in his diet, and lived with the greatest 
moderation and simplicity. He died, very suddenly, 30 May, 1895, 
of apoplexy, which had also caused his father's death. 

He was buried from the First Church in Boston. Seldom are so 
many people of prominence seen at a funeral, even at that of a 
public man, as were assembled to pay respect to the memory of 
John Forrester Andrew. 

Mr. Andrew lived in Boston on the northeast corner of Com- 
monwealth Avenue and Hereford Street. His summer house was 
at Hingham, his mother's birthplace, where he, too, was born. He 
had great affection for this town and the country adjoining it. 
While the appointments of his life were such as befitted his for- 
tune, he lived, both in town and country, in an essentially simple 
and unostentatious manner. 

He was elected a Member of this Society 18 January, 1893. 
He was a Member and at one time a Director of the New England 
Historic Genealogical Society. He was President of the Phillips 
School Association and an Honorary Member of the John A. Andrew 
Post of the Grand Army of the Republic. He was a member of 
the Union, Somerset, St. Botolph, Country, and Algonquin Clubs, 
and of the last he was President from its organization. The 
Massachusetts Reform Club, the New England Tariff Reform 
League, the Young Men's Democratic Club of Massachusetts, and 
the Reform Club of New York were the political organizations in 
which he had membership. He was a Trustee of the Massachusetts 
School for the Feeble Minded ; for some time he was President 
of the Massachusetts Infant Asylum; and at the time of his 
death he was President of the Home for Aged Colored Women 
and of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children. 



A Stated Meeting of the Society was held in the Hall 
of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences on 
"Wednesday, 17 February, 1897, at three o'clock in the 
afternoon, the Hon. John Lowell, First Vice-President, in 
the chair. 

The Records of the Stated Meeting in January were read 
and approved. 

The Corresponding Secretary reported that the Council, 
acting under Chapter IV., Article 2, of the By-Laws, had 
elected Mr. Edward Wheelwright President of the Society, 
to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Dr. Gould, and 
Mr. Philip H. Sears an Executive Member of the Council 
for the unexpired term of Mr. Edward Wheelwright. 

Judge Lowell then appointed Dr. Henry P. Quincy and 
Mr. Samuel Johnson a Committee to escort the President- 
elect to the chair. 

President Wheelwright then took the chair and delivered 
his Inaugural Address : — 

Gentlemen of The Colonial Society of Massachusetts: — 

In accepting the position to which I have been elected by the 
Council, I cannot but regret that some other member of the 
Society had not been selected to assume its duties. 

I can truly say that the mention of my name in connection with 
the office was wholly unexpected by me. I cannot avoid being 
deeply conscious of my unfitness ; but since the Council has, in its 
wisdom, and by a unanimous vote, decided to overlook my mani- 
fest deficiencies in view of certain qualifications which they claim to 
have discovered that I possess, it would be ungracious in me to 
insist upon this point and to call in question the correctness of 


their judgment. I thank them most sincerely for their good 
opinion of me and will do my best to justify it. 

From one great difficulty which usually besets a " President-elect," 
and which is now causing great embarrassment to the gentleman 
who is shortly to be inducted into high office at Washington, I 
am happily relieved, — I shall not have to appoint a Cabinet. My 
slate is made up for me by our Constitution, which, in the board of 
Councillors, has provided a body of able advisers, of tried expe- 
rience whose recommendations and suggestions I can follow with 
implicit confidence. To them, more than to me, will be due 
whatever success may attend " this administration." 

I shall look, too, for guidance and inspiration to the example of 
my predecessor, the illustrious first President of our Society. The 
dignity and courtesy with which he presided over our deliberations 
and the keen wit and genial humor with which he enlivened our 
social hours I cannot hope to imitate ; but I can at least keep in 
view his high aims for this Society and aid in carrying out his 
plans for its present and future prosperity. I shall especially bear 
in mind his definition of its purposes, as expressed at what he 
termed its "Inaugural Meeting" 15 February, 1893, almost exactly 
four years ago to-day. 

" We are associated," he said, " to render, so far as in us lies, our 
grateful homage to the memory of these our ancestors [the men of 
Plymouth Colony and Massachusetts Bay], to commemorate their good 
deeds, to investigate the influences and agencies which brought them 
here, to examine the true character of the actions for which they have 
been criticised or censured in later days ; but, above all, to draw inspi- 
ration from their example and devotion at the same time that we hope 
to aid in perpetuating the remembrance of their virtues and lofty 
deeds." 1 

Among Dr. Gould's most cherished plans for the Society there 
was none for which he was more enthusiastic than that of forming 
at least the nucleus of an Endowment, — of a Fund or Funds 
upon the income of which we. might securely rely for the cost, first 
of all, of our annual Publications. Such a Fund, he thought, 
would also enable us to enter with confidence, and undeterred by 
the cost, upon fields of research which lie unexplored all around us 

* Publications, i. 19. 


and whose capabilities have often been pointed out, not only by 
our honored late President, but by our learned Corresponding 
Secretary and other of our associates. Hardly a meeting has 
passed without these topics being eloquently dwelt upon. Their 
importance has, indeed, been fully realized by the Society, and at 
the last Annual Meeting a vote was passed authorizing the ap- 
pointment of a Committee to take the matter in hand. The Com- 
mittee was not appointed at that meeting, our late President 
wishing to take time to select the persons best fitted to serve upon 
it. He had, however, before his death, prepared a list of those 
whom he proposed to appoint at the December Meeting ; and it 
only remains, in order to complete the action of the Society, to 
name the Committee as drawn up by him. 

No more fitting monument to the memory of our late President 
could be erected by us than such a Fund as he proposed. Out of 
gratitude to him and in recognition of his eminent services, if for 
no other reason, every member of the Society should feel bound to 
contribute to it, in the measure of his ability. 

And now, Gentlemen, once more thanking the Council for the 
honor they have done me, and craving your kind indulgence for 
any errors or short-comings on my part as your President, I pro- 
pose that we proceed with the regular business of this meeting. 

Mr. Henry H. Edes called attention to the fact that the 
full name and antecedents of Pierre Boucher de la Broquerie, 
who led the French and Indians In the attack made upon 
Wells in the summer of 1693, had apparently been hitherto 
unknown to our American historians, not excepting our late 
associate Mr. Parkman ; indeed, so little appears to have 
been known of La Broquerie by our American writers that 
they have obscured his identity under various misspellings 
of his titular appellation. 

Mr. Edes then communicated the following correspondence 
which he had with John G. Bourinot, D.C.L., Honorary 
Secretary of the Eoyal Society of Canada, during the prepa- 
ration, by our associate, Mr. Lindsay Swift, of the Index of 
the first volume of the Publications of this Society : — 



House of Commons, 

Ottawa, 20th May, 1896. 
Dear Mr. Edes: 

The Royal Society is in active session, and I am not able for a day or 
two to go fully into the La Brognerie question. I know, however, it is 
a misprint for La Broquerie, one of the names of the Boucher family. 
I shall let you know all about it later. 

Yours sincerely, 

Henry H. Edes, Esq. 

House of Commons, 

J. G. Bourinot. 

27th Mar, 1896. 

Dear Mr. Edes : 

I have obtained the enclosed information respecting La Broquerie 

from Mr. Benjamin Suite, F. R. S. C, the author of " Les Canadiens 

Francais" (8 vols. 4to.), and the best informed man in Canada on such 

subjects. I thought it best to have my own opinion corroborated by the 

best authority in Canada. His letter should be used. 

Yours, etc., 

J. G. Bourinot. 
Henry H. Edes, Esq. 


Pierre Boucher de Grosbois, Governor of Three Rivers, was the father 
of Pierre Boucher de la Broquerie, born, Three Rivers, 1653, married, 
Quebec, 25th October, 1683, to Charlotte Denys de la Trinite. La 
Broquerie lived at Boucherville. He is the officer of 1693 mentioned by 
Mr. Edes in his letter of the 15th May, 1896. 

His father, Pierre Boucher de Grosbois and Boucherville, lived from 
1668 until 1717 on his Seigniory of Boucherville, and was known by the 
name of Mr. de Boucherville. 

After 1717, Pieire Boucher de la Broquerie, being the eldest son, took 
the name of Boucherville and the Seigniory ; he died there 17th August, 

Joseph, son of the latter, called also La Broquerie, did good services 
during the wars of 1744-60. In 1756 he built ships on Lake Ontario; 
we have a map of that Lake by him, 1757. He died at Boucherville (of 
which he was the Seignor) 28 February, 1762. 

B. Sulte. 
24th May, 1896. 

Avm " //</■>/</'// tine /uxfdedJum. // 
/////,/, //rr//> ■'///</// /'<"/. V2SaitifV. 


Mr. Edes then offered the following vote, which was 
unanimously adopted by the Society : — 

Voted, That the Vote of the Society at its last Annual Meeting 
authorizing the President to appoint a Committee of five members 
to consider the subject of increasing the permanent Funds of the 
Society is hereby amended so that the Committee shall consist of 
seven members, of whom the President shall be one. 

The Chair then named the Committee, which Dr. Gould 
had selected, as follows : The President, ex officio, Samuel 
Johnson, David R. Whitney, William Endicott, Jr., 1 
Charles P. Choate, Robert N. Toppan, and Nathaniel 
Cushing Nash. 

President Wheelwright exhibited the original Commis- 
sion, signed by Governor Hutchinson, of Martin Gay as 
Captain of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company, 
and his invitation to dine with the Governor and Council 
on Election Day. Mr. Wheelwright then left the Chair and 
read the following paper : — 

AND HIS WIFE. 1775-1788. 

These letters are now the property of Mr. W. Allan Gay, of West 
Hingham, Mass., a grandson of their authors. He has kindly 
lent them for exhibition to the Society and has allowed copies 
to be made of them, which are herewith presented. 

The letters are interesting, inasmuch as they bring us almost 
into personal contact with people who were living in Boston more 
than a hundred years ago, and one of whom saw, from a safe dis- 
tance, the battle of Bunker Hill. They may help us to enter into 
the feelings and to appreciate the perplexities of those who, from 
misreading the signs of the times, were induced to attach them- 

1 At the time of the appointment of this Committee Mr. Endicott was serv- 
ing on two similar committees of other organizations. He therefore asked to 
be excused from service, and Mr. Henry H. Edes was appointed by the Presi- 
dent to fill the vacancy thus created. 


selves to a losing cause. Also, taken in connection with the notes 
by which they are here supplemented, they illustrate the methods 
adopted for dealing with the confiscated estates of Loyalists, or, as 
they were then styled, " Conspirators and Absentees," as well as 
some of the devices resorted to by their families and friends to 
save at least a portion of these estates for their original owners. 
Here follow the three Letters in the order of their dates : — 

a Coppy Boston 8 July 1775 

Brother Jotham 

I received yours of the 20 Ult°. tis from a presumption that you 
may receive this, that Induses me to write by this Vessel, which is 
bound to the river S l Johns, in order to procure fresh provisions, but 
in Case of a desapointment there ; tis probable will go to Cumberland 
before she returns here, if so this will be handed to you by M r Sam pel 
who is (as I understand) part owner, and has the Consignment of the 
Cargo, I hope it will be in your power to afford him any assistence he 
may have occation for, bouth as to buying & selling, and I must beg of 
you to send me as much fresh provision of all kinds as you Can Con- 
veniantly spare and Can be admitted to ship by this or any other Vessell 
bound here 

My Son Martin & M r Anderson's son are pasingers in this Vessell to 
S l Johns, my design in sending Martin there, is, that he may go from 
thence to Quebeck, where I hope, with M r . Anderson's 1 Interest & Influ- 
ence to fix him an apprentice to some good man in the Mercantile way, 
where I trust he will be Clear of the Confution & horrour that attend 
this place, which is a perfict Garrison serrounded with a Rebell Army, 
not the lest communication from or to the Country, deprived of all the 
necessarys of life, which we used to have from thence, the only thing, 
we Can have to eate that is fresh, is fish, which is a great support to 
the Inhabitence, and troops in this town, without which our sittuation 
would be Intolarable. 

the Victory obtained by about two thousend regular troops Com- 
manded by Gen'- How, over a large body of the Country Rebels (tis 

1 This may refer to James Anderson, of Boston, who was an Addresser of 
Hutchinson and of Gage ; but more probably the person referred to was Samuel 
Anderson, of New York, who, at the beginning of the Revolution, went to 
Canada, where he held, successively, high judicial offices under the Crown. 
See Sabine's Loyalists of the American Revolution (edition of 1864), i. 164. 


said about six thousend) on the heights of Charlstown, the 17 Ult? was 
a remarcable Action, it proves that nothing the Enimies to Great Brit- 
ton Can do will daunt the Courage of Brittish troops, the Rebels had 
Intrenched themselves on the top of a high hill with two Cannon 
Mounted in the Redoubt, besides severall field pieces, on the hill which 
is but about a quarter of a mile from Charle's Riever, in approching 
which, the troops had to brake through stone walls and other difficultys 
which gave the Enimy every advantage they Could wish for, however 
after a most violent hot fire, the brave solders forsed the Intrenchments, 
to the Joy of all the Spectaters, (myself being one) and others on this 
side the riever, who are friends to their King & Country, emediatly 
on the Kings troops appearing on the top of the Redoubt, the Rebels 
ran of in great Confution leaving their Cannon, Intrenching tools and a 
large number of their dead and some wounded, the loss was great on 
bouth sides, the action lasted about an hour & a quarter ; we have reason 
to lament the loss of so many Valluable brave offercers & men of the 
Kings Army who were kild on the field of Battle, & since dead of the 
wounds they rec d ; I have not seen any account of the transaction of 
that day made publick by authority, therefore will not pretend to say 
which sufferd most in the loss of men, will mention one on the Rebell 
side, the famus Doct r Worrin, who has for some year[s] bin a sturer up 
of Rebelion was kild in the action, had some others of his disposition 
which I Could name ben there, and meet the same fate with him, it 
would made the Victory of that day the more Glorious ; soon after the 
action begun the town of Charlstown was seat on fire in several places 
by fire balls from a battery on this side which Continued burning till all 
the buildings in it were Consumed, except a few houses at the Extreem 
part, near where a body of regular troops are now Incamped, & well 
fortified against any attack that may be made against them tho the 
Rebels meet with a shaemfull defeat, they still Continue in their opposi- 
tion, in fortifying hill and other places near this town, I am not ap- 
prehencive of their ever being able to take or distroy this town, but tis a 
malincoly Consideration to be in this sittuation which must in time prove 
fatell to this town & province ; if not soon preven . d by that allmighty 
being whose providence preserves & Governs the world & all things in it. 
I dont now write to Samuell as tis uncortin wheather this will reach 
you, if it does tell him I received his letter, which gave me pleasure, 
give mine & the family Love to him, I hope he wont fail to wright 
by every opporty., tis now near a month since I have received any 
advise from our friends at hingham, they were well at that time. 
I remain as useall your affectionate 

Brother Martin Gay 


P. S. tis more then probable there will [be] a great demand or hay 
& other produce of your Country which may afford matter of specula- 
tion with you 

Boston July 27 1775 

I have only time to acnowlidge the recept of yours of the 13 Ins*. 
and regard the Contents, but tis not in my power to send you any of 
the articles you mentiond, as they are for the present absolutely pro- 
hibited, since the above letter was forward . d nothing metteriall has 
taken place, Except the burning of houses & barns on the Islands in 
this harbour, and this day week, the light house was bunt by a party 
of the Rebels I am making new lamps for it. it will be soon in 
repare. I am &c. 

Martin Gay 


Boston 24 June 1786 
My Dear Mr Gay 

my Last of the 8 instant Containing the Melancholy acount of the 
Death of my father, I make no Doubt you have Rec'd ; in that I also 
informed you that the House was to be Sold th 15 of this Month wich 
was Done acordingly, Mr Walley Choose to bid it of and Brother 


timothy bought it at 380 he paid 129 Dollars Earnest money the Rest is 
to be paid in 6 Weeks I wish you Cou'd Setle your affairs so as to 
Come Home before the time is up M' Walley has sent you the acount 
of the Sale properly authentic and has Directe them to be Left at M* 
Pike's at Halifax. Do Come Home as Soon as you Can. our friends 
unite with me in Love to you and the Children father Gay has got 
quite well faney is with me and Desire[s] her Duty to you Love to her 
Brothers and Sister bleve me to be 

your tender Affectionate 

Wife R Gay 
Filed : 

From M rB Gay June 1786 


London 7 July 1788 
Dear Sir 

I acnowlidge the receipt of your Esteemed favour under date the 
1 th of March last, inclosing a list of Books &c. which I do assure you 
Sir, I received with particular pleasure, and am happy to have it in my 
power to fulfill your orders, with my best endeavours in the purchase 


of them at the lowest rate with the Cash, the trunk Containing the 
articles for you, is addressed, with other small matters to M rs Gay, by 
the Brig Nathan 1 , Cap* Downe. the bill of Cost inclosed, you may pay 
when & how as it will be most conveniant. I which them safe and 
hope they will meet your approbation 

Your ob'iging letter brought me the first intelligence of the "ratifi- 
cation of the federal Constitution by the Convention in your Common- 
wealth", the great & happy Consequences you have mentiond, that are 
to follow may, perhaps, strike the Europian nations with admiration, and 
give occasion for greater exultation then ever to the " Citizens of Massa- 
chusetts " in being independent and free from theTirony of Great Britain ; 
be it so, and leat them In joy that satisfaction, which I am persuaded they 
may do without being envied their happiness by this Country. 

The death of M r Linclon, 1 is an affecting Instance of mortality and 
the uncertainty of all temporal Injoyments, under the most favourable 
prospect of their long Continuance 

among the list of Candidates for Lieu* Gov r you favoured me with, 
you think, " Warren 2 stands an equil Chance of success", but it is my 
opinion Lincoln 3 is the man succeeded to that Honb 1 and lucrative Post, 
the faculty of pleasing all partys, and the great abilities he has Dis- 
play'd in Supporting and Suppressing Rebelions have no doubt recom- 
mended him to his fellow Citizens in preference to others. 

I cannot pretend to say when my affairs will admit of my return to 
America, by a late act of parliament a final settlement will (it is 
sayed) be made with the Loyalists within a few months I must wait 
with patience this important event, then prepare to leave this both won- 
derfull & Delightfull Kingdom, and return to my family & friends in 
my native Country though an Alien when in it 

please to make my respectfull regards to M r Gannet 4 & lady with 
great Esteem, I am Sir your 

Hum le Serv* Martin Gay 
M r James • 

Filed : — 

To M r E. James of Cambridge 7 July 1788 

1 This is probably intended for Lincoln, the fifth and sixth letters being 
transposed. Mr. James's mother was descended from the Lincolns. See History 
of Hingham, ii. 380, 381. 

2 General James Warren. 

8 General Benjamin Lincoln. 

4 The Rev. Caleb Gannett (H. C. 1763) and his first wife, Katherine Wen- 
dell, are here referred to. He was Steward of Harvard College from 1779 till 
his death in 1818. 


Martin Gay, the writer of two of these letters, was a son of the 
Rev. Ebenezer Gay, of Hingham, Massachusetts, and was born in 
that town 29 December, 1726. He married first, 13 December, 
1750, Mary Pinckney, 1 by whom he had seven children, several of 
whom are mentioned in the letters. After her death he married 
for his second wife, about 1770, Ruth Atkins. By her he had 
only two children, — Ebenezer, baptized 24 February, 1771, of 
whom mention is made later; and Pinckney, who died in infancy. 
Mrs. Ruth (Atkins) Gay died in Hingham 12 September, 1810, 
cut. 74 years. She must therefore have been born in 1736, and 
was about thirty-four years old at the time of her marriage. Her 
husband was about ten years her senior. In the History of the 
Town of Hingham, 2 from which most of these genealogical data are 
taken, 3 he is said to have "carried on the business of a brass- 
founder " on Union Street, Boston, but in the documents cited in 
this paper, wherever his calling is mentioned he is usually styled 
" copper-smith." 4 In the Inventory of his personal estate, however, 
one of the items is " a founder's mould." 5 He derived the title of 
Captain, commonly given to him, from his having been commis- 
sioned as " Captain in the Antient & honorable Artillery Com- 
pany," under " Hand and Seal at Arms " of Thomas Hutchinson, 
Captain-General and Governor, &c, 5 June, 1773. 6 

The original commission has been preserved, and is in the pos- 
session of Captain Gay's grandson, Mr. W. Allan Gay. By his 
permission it is here exhibited. It was accompanied, when deliv- 
ered, by a slip of paper which has been preserved with it. The 
paper is without signature and reads as follows : — 

1 She was probably a daughter of John and Elizabeth (Gretian) Pinkney. 
See post, pp. 395, 396, notes. 

2 Published by the Town in 1893. 

s See also "John Gay of Dedham, Mass., and some of his Descendants," by 
Frederick Lewis Gay, in the New England Historical and Genealogical Register 
for January, 1879, xxxiii. 45-57, from which the authors of the History of 
Hingham appear to have copied. 

4 See post, p. 398, note 3. 

6 Suffolk Probate Files, No. 16,842. 

e In the Poll of Members, &c, published by the Ancient and Honorable 
Artillery Company in 1895, Martin Gay is erroneously set down as Captain 
tinder the year 1772. In 1770 he was Lieutenant. He was Captain for one 
year only. 


" The Committee of Council prefent their Compliments to the Com- 
mission officers of the Antient & Hon ble Artillery Company and ask 
the favour of their Company to dine with the Govern' and Council on 
the Election day at Concert Hall. 

" To Cap* Martin Gay." 

On the back is written, — 

" fr The Committee of Councell 
June 1773." 

At the same time with this military commission, Martin Gay 
held what would now perhaps be thought the somewhat incongru- 
ous position of church deacon. He was elected to that dignity 
in the West Church, in Lynde Street, in what was then called 
New Boston, as appears by the Church Records, in August, 1773 ; 
but only in October following, and " after due consideration, con- 
cluded to accept the office, tho' not in all respects agreeable to 
his own inclination." He was perhaps troubled by the seeming 
incompatibility of the religious duties sought to be laid upon 
him with those pertaining to his military capacity. The pastor 
of the church at the time was the Rev. Simeon Howard, who 
subsequently married for his second wife the new Deacon's sister 

On the thirtieth of April, 1775, shortly after the Battle of Lex- 
ington, Deacon Gay, with Deacon Jones, was "requested to take 
care of the plate, &c, belonging to this church and Congregation." 
The church and congregation were at this time dispersed, and 
their meeting-house occupied as a barrack by British troops. The 
pastor, though well known to be a firm and zealous friend of the 
patriot cause, was inclined to go to Nova Scotia, where he had 
reason to believe he could obtain a temporary settlement as a 
minister, and suggested that such of his people as were so dis- 
posed should go with him. This plan was in fact carried out, 
at what precise time has not been ascertained, but it was evi- 
dently before the evacuation of Boston by the British forces. 
Dr. Howard himself returned after an absence of fifteen months. 
It was under these circumstances that Deacon Gay, as one of 
the custodians of "the plate & linnen, . . . from an apprehension 
that they would be unsafe if left behind, carried them to Nova 
Scotia whither he went with the British Troops when they evacu- 



ated the town." He appears to have signified, soon after, his desire 
to return them, which seems to have been done as soon as it was 
judged feasible " without danger from the enemy." Long years 
after, in 1793, when Martin Gay had at length resumed his resi- 
dence in Boston, the church adopted the following resolution : — 

" 1793. August 4. . . . Cap 1 Gay having for several years officiated 
as deacon of this ch h till the Society was dispersed by the war which 
occasioned the Revolution, and having taken care of the plate belonging 
to the ch h while the town was in the hands of the british troops, and 
when it was evacuated ; 

Voted, that the thanks of the Ch h be given to him for his Service in 
that office and his attention to their interest." 

Deacon Gay's connection with the West Church appears to 
have been renewed, though not in any official capacity, imme- 
diately upon his return home. When, in 1805, the Proprietors 
were invited to subscribe to a loan for the purpose of erecting a 
new House of Worship, he responded with a subscription of two 
hundred dollars, afterward increased to three hundred. He was 
at that time proprietor of Pew No. 31 in the old Meeting House. 
On the completion of the new building, which was first opened 
for worship on Thanksgiving Day, 1806, he became proprietor of 
Pew No. 105 in the new edifice * and continued to hold it until 
his death on the third of February, 1809. 2 

Beside these two honorable offices, the one military the other 
ecclesiastical, Martin Gay held several others, of a civil nature, 
to which he was elected by the votes of his fellow-citizens. 

From an examination of the Boston Town Records, as printed 
in the sixteenth and eighteenth Reports of the Record Commis- 
sioners, it appears that he was yearly chosen one of the two 
Assay Masters from 1758 to 1774, inclusive, a period of seven- 
teen years, with the possible exception of the year 17G0, when 
there was no report of the election of any one to that office. 
Also, in the years 1767, 1768, 1772, 1773, and 1774 he was chosen 
one of the sixteen Fire wards of the Town, in which office he had 

1 This was the Building now occupied as the West End Branch of the 
Boston Public Library. 

2 The Columbian Centinel (No. 2592) of Saturday, 4 February, 1809, records 
his death on the previous morning, and announces his funeral on the following 
Monday "at half past 8 o'clock from his late dwelling house on Union Street." 


as associates such men as John Hancock, Samuel Adams, and 
>Adino Paddock. His staff of office as Fireward, a slender rod, 
painted red, five and a half feet in length, has been preserved. 

In 1771 he was chosen one of the twelve Wardens of the Town ; 
and in 1774 he was one of fifty-five gentlemen, beside the Repre- 
sentatives of the Town, the Overseers of the Poor, and the Town 
Treasurer, who were invited to accompany the Selectmen to visit 
the Public Schools. 

The holding of these offices, of considerable importance in those 
days, indicates the esteem in which he was held by his fellow 
townsmen. After 1774 he was not elected to any town office, 
owing, doubtless, to his public avowal of Loyalist sentiments. In 
June of that year he was one of the signers of an Address pre- 
sented to Governor Hutchinson, on his retirement, by " one hun- 
dred and twenty of the merchants and principal gentlemen of 
Boston, of very reputable character." x 

Before leaving Boston with the British troops, our worthy 
Copper-smith, Captain, and Deacon was to receive one more token 
of the high estimation in which his character was held by persons 
of both political parties and of differing religious denominations. 
By a letter dated Boston, 24 February, 1776, addressed by Thomas 
Oliver, who had recently become Lieutenant Governor, to the 
Rev. Dr. Henry Caner, Rector of King's Chapel, Col. Jonathan 
Snelling, Major Adino Paddock, Capt. John Gore, and Capt. Martin 
Gay, those gentlemen were authorized and required to take pos- 
session of " the House commonly called the Green Dragon, and 
prepare it as a Hospital for the Reception of such Objects as shall 
require immediate Relief." The " Objects " specially contem- 
plated in this order of the Lieutenant Governor were those who were 
in distress occasioned by the long " blockade " of the Town by the 
Provincial forces. For the benefit of these distressed persons, and 
especially of " the Widow and the Orphan, the Aged and Infirm," 
who "soonest and most severely feel the Effects of Scarcity," a 
subscription had been opened, headed by the Lieutenant Governor 
with a contribution of 50 Dollars = <£15. 00. 00. Of the fund thus 
to be raised the Rev. Dr. Caner and Messrs. Paddock, Gore, Gay, 

1 See List of " Addressers " in Proceedings of the Massachusetts Historical 
Society for October, 1870, xi. 392-395. Also, Hutchinson's History of Massa- 
chusetts, iii. 459. 


and Snelling had been appointed stewards, — Martin Gay had him- 
self subscribed 10 Dollars = £3. From a paper in Dr. Caner's 
handwriting, dated ''Halifax, May, 1776," it appears that the 
proceeds of this subscription amounted to £139. 19. 6., of which 
£46. 4. 6. had been expended for relieving the Poor, leaving a 
balance of £93. 15. in the hands of Capt. Martin Gay and Col. 
Snelling. 1 Capt. Gay had by that time left Boston. What became 
of the above balance is not stated. No doubt the Captain-Deacon's 
stewardship in this case was as faithful as in that of the West 
Church communion plate. 

Within a month after performing this last service of beneficence 
to the Town which had so long been his home, Martin Gay was on 
shipboard, bound for Halifax in company with the British troops 
whom he so fondly thought to be invincible, but who were now 
flying from the despised Continentals. In the " List of the inhabi- 
tants of Boston, who on the evacuation by the British, in March, 
1776, removed to Halifax with the army," 2 is the following: — 

"Gay, Martin 3." 

The figure 3 placed after the name seems to indicate that Martin 
Gay was accompanied in his flight by two other persons, making, 
together, a party of three. According to the family tradition 
these companions were his daughter, Mary, who afterward mar- 
ried the Rev. William Black of Halifax, N. S., and his son Martin. 
He also took with him " his man London." Martin Gay, the younger, 
as we have seen by his father's letter of 8 July, 1775, was a pas- 
senger to St. John in the vessel by which that letter was sent. If 
it were he who accompanied his father to Halifax, he must have 
returned to Boston in the interval. In the List of Loyalists in the 
Memorial History of Boston (III. 175), are the names of Martin 
Gay and Samuel Gay. 

Leaving Boston in March, 1776, with the British troops, Martin 
Gay remained in Nova Scotia during the whole period of the Rev- 
olutionary War. In 1787, four years after peace had been declared, 

1 Foote's Annals of King's Chapel, ii. 29i-296. See also the Rev. Edward 
G. Porter's Rambles in Old Boston, p. 98. 

2 This List is commonly known as Barren's List. It is printed in the Pro- 
ceedings of the Massachusetts Historical Society for December, 1880, xviii. 


he appears to have made a visit to Boston, and in the autumn of 
1788 he went to England, apparently with the hope of obtaining 
from the British Government an indemnity for his losses as a 
Loyalist. He remained there two years. In 1792 he returned to 
Boston "to remain permanently," and continued to reside there 
until his death. 

The first letter in the series was written by Capt. Martin Gay 
to his brother Jotham, seven years his elder. Jotham Gay had 
been an officer of the Provincial forces in the Old French War, 
and in 1755 had taken part in the expedition against Nova Scotia 
under Gen. John Winslow. He had afterward settled in the Prov- 
ince which he had helped to conquer from the French, and at the 
date of this letter he had been for more than ten years a resident 
of Cumberland, Nova Scotia. The letter, though inscribed " a 
Coppy," is in the undoubted handwriting of its author, and is 
signed in two places with his usual signature. It is probably 
the first draft of the letter actually sent. It is chiefly noteworthy 
as containing a mention, — it is hardly more, — of the Battle of 
Bunker Hill by an eye-witness. Written just three weeks after 
the event, it adds nothing to our knowledge and only repeats the 
rumors that were circulating before any authentic account was 
published. The writer's loyalty to his " King and Country " is 
very apparent, as well as his detestation of all Rebels and espe- 
cially of the "famus Doct r Worrin," whose name he curiously, 
though phonetically, misspells. The " son Martin " mentioned in 
the letter was a youth of fifteen years, who, three years later, was 
accidentally shot by a friend while gunning near Windsor, Nova 

Samuel Gay was an older son, who graduated at Harvard in 
this same year, 1775. Why he was not at this time taking his 
degree at Cambridge, at the College Commencement, which in 
those days was always held in July, is explained by the fact that, 
owing to the disturbed state of the times and the quartering of 
American troops in the College buildings, no public Commence- 
ment took place that year. Samuel Gay became a permanent 
resident of New Brunswick, and, according to the History of 
Hingham, above cited, was for several years a member of the Pro- 
vincial House of Assembly for Westmoreland County and Chief 


Justice of the Court of Common Pleas. He died 21 January, 
1847, in his 93d year. 1 

The second in date of these letters, dated Boston, 24 June, 1786, 
is from Mrs. Ruth Gay, second wife of Capt. Martin Gay, to her 
husband, then at Halifax. Mrs. Gay's maiden name, as already 
stated, was Atkins. It appears 2 that she was the daughter of 
Thomas and Sarah Atkins of Boston. Thomas Atkins, a brick- 
layer by trade, was a well-to-do citizen, his real estate having been 
appraised at his death, in 1785, at £1,696 13s. 4d. He, with his 
eldest son Timothy, adhered to the patriot cause, but his second 
son Gibbs Atkins, a cabinetmaker, was, like his brOther-in-law 
Martin Gay, an Absentee. 3 So were families divided in " the days 
that tried men's souls." 

The " faney " spoken of in this letter must have been Frances, 
Martin Gay's youngest daughter by his first wife. She was bap- 
tized at the West Church in April, 1763, and was now about 23 
years old. She had remained with her step-mother in Boston. 
The "Brothers & Sister," to whom she sends love were Samuel 
and Mary (children of Martin Gay), and the husband of the latter, 
the Rev. William Black, of Halifax. Martin, another brother, 
as we have just stated, died in Nova Scotia eight years previous. 

The most interesting part of this letter, however, is that 
which refers to the sale of the " House." This house has a curi- 
ous history. It was included in the estate purchased in 1760 by 
Martin Gay, in part from the descendants of the four daughters of 
Hannah Bradford, who had inherited it from her father, John 
Rogers, of Swanzey, 4 and in part from Samuel Valentine of Free- 
town, Bristol County, as shown by the following conveyances 6 : — 

' 1 See also Mr. Frederick Lewis Gay's article in the New England Historical 
and Genealogical Register for January, 1879, xxxiii. 45-57, already cited on 
p. 381, ante. 

2 Suffolk Probate Files, No. 18,785, Bond of Timothy Atkins et al., dated 
9 December, 1794. 

» See Suffolk Probate Files, No. 16,950. 

4 Swansey or Swansea, Bristol County, Massachusetts. 

5 Suffolk Deeds, xcv. 196-198. The second of these conveyances (Gay to 
Gay) is from the parents of Martin Gay, viz , — "Ebenezer Gay of Ilingham, 
clerk, & Jerusha, his wife." Mrs. Gay was one of the four daughters of 
Hannah Bradford. 

By OAooct Carfeto* 

°y \yO Feb 7 '814 7\ 

\ No „ Reduced to asct/e of 20 Feet roen m« 

r * * £ 7- 



J1> r 


2 o ?^ 

r t et. 

{/Vol, fcc/ocec/fo e sca/e of 20 Feet ro eninoA } 










Lane to Gay, 13 May, 1760. 

Gay to Gay, 30 September, 1760 

Godfrey to Gay, 30 December, 1760 

Valentine to Gay, 20 June, 1760 

Total, £190. 

By each of the three first-named of the above conveyances 
Martin Gay acquired an undivided fourth part of the estate 
bequeathed by Hannah Bradford to her four daughters. Further 
search would probably show that the remaining fourth part was 
included, with additions or improvements, in the premises con- 
veyed by the deed of Samuel Valentine. All the premises con- 
veyed by these deeds are described as situated in Union Street, 
Boston, but no boundaries nor measurements are given, excepting 
of that purchased of Samuel Valentine, which actually bordered on 
the street, where it measured seventeen feet, and was bounded 
northerly (it should read southerly) on a passage-way. This 
passage-way, called in subsequent deeds " the great entry way," 
was included by implication in all the undivided portions purchased. 
As the whole front, including the passageway, is described in sub- 
sequent deeds as measuring forty-four feet, it must have been 
twenty-seven feet in width. This width was afterward reduced, at 
the entrance, to ten feet five inches by the prolongation of the 
shop fronting on the street, or its reconstruction on a larger scale. 1 
It was on the portion purchased of Valentine that Martin Gay's 
"front shop" stood. There was an entrance through it to the 
dwelling-house in the rear. 2 

1 See plan drawn by Osgood Carleton, 7 February, 1814. 

2 From plans drawn in 1814 by Osgood Carleton, and in 1881 by Alexander 
Wadsworth, for subsequent owners of the estate, it appears that the site is now, 
in part, covered by the modern buildings numbered 56-58 and 60-62 Union 
Street, near Hanover Street, and opposite the entrance to Marshall Street. A 
large part of the rear portion was cut off in laying out Friend Street, in 1855, 
but the line of frontage on Union Street remains, measuring, however, 48 T ^ 
feet instead of 44 feet, according to the old measurement. Something has 
probably been added from the adjoining estate on the north, belonging to the 
same owners, in order to equalize more nearly the width of the three buildings. 
All resemblance to the former aspect of the premises has entirely disappeared. 
" The great entry way " was long since closed and built upon. The number- 
ing of Union Street has been frequently changed ; in 1840 the building cover- 
ing the site of Martin Gay's front shop was No. 22. 


The sale mentioned by Mrs. Gay took place under the provisions of 
Several Acts of the General Court (1777-1780) for the disposal of the 
estates of " Conspirators and Absentees." In some respects these es- 
tates were treated as those of deceased persons. 1 Thus on the twenty- 
seventh of March, 1779, a warrant was issued by the Probate Court 
to Giles Harris, Jonathan Brown, and Jacob Cooper to — 

44 set off to Ruth Gay, wife of Martin Gay, an absentee, for her use 
& Improvement during the absence of her Husband, one third part of 
the Real Estate whereof her Husband, the said Martin Gay, was seized 
& possessed at his departure from this State," etc. 2 

Pursuant to this warrant, the above-named persons report, 2 
April, 1779, that after examining the premises and notifying per- 
sons interested — 

44 We Divide & Sett off to the said Ruth Gay, as her third part in 
said Real Estate, The two middle tenements (of the house in Union 
Street, Boston) with the cellars, chambers and upper rooms to the 
same belonging as the partition now stands and the land under the same. 
Also the shop fronting on Union Street and the land under the same, 
with the liberty to go through the great entry way into the said shop 
with the use and improvement of the Yard Well, Pump and Privy." 8 

According to the family tradition this assignment of 44 the two 
middle tenements to Mrs. Gay," as " her thirds " of the real estate 
was made at her request, or by her choice, as a shrewd means of 
retaining for herself, and eventually for her husband, the whole of 
the property. Naturally it would be difficult to sell or to lease the 
two ends of a house so divided and with the middle taken out. 
So it appeared to the creditors of the estate, and accordingly an 
Appeal to the Governor and Council against the action of the 
Probate Court was taken in their behalf by John Lowell, who had 
been appointed 44 Agent " of the estate. 4 

In a paper dated 16 April, 1782, and preserved in the Probate 
Files, 5 he gives his reasons for the Appeal as follows : — ■ 

1 See Act of 1 May, 1779 (chap. 40), Province Laws, v. 968-971, 1056, 1057. 

a Suffolk Probate Files, No. 16,842. See Acts of 1776-77 (chap. 38, sect. 5), 
Province Laws, v. 631. 

8 Suffolk Probate Files, No. 16,842. 

4 This Appeal was allowed by Chap. 278 of the Resolves of 1781, approved 
30 October of that year. 

6 Suffolk Probate Files, No. 16,842. 



" First, That the part of said estate assigned for the dower as afore- 
said is much greater than one third part thereof in quantity and value. 

" 2 d , That the dower aforesaid is assigned in a manner very injurious 
to the residue of said estate and the creditors therein interested by dim- 
inishing the value and rendering the same unsaleable ; whereas the said 
dower without injustice to the Widow 1 may be sett off in a manner 
more convenient to the whole estate & less detrimental to the creditors." 2 

Nothing further seems to have been done in regard to this Appeal, 
and the matters in dispute appear to have been finally settled by 
the sale at auction of the residue of the estate — less the portion 
reserved to Mrs. Gay as dower — to her brother Timothy Atkins, 
15 June, 1786. Mr. Timothy Atkins evidently " bid in " the house 
for the benefit of his sister. He was abundantly able to do this, 
as he had, meantime, become entitled, as the eldest son, to a double 
share of the estate of his father, Thomas Atkins (d. 1785), of which 
he and his mother, Sarah Atkins, were administrators. 3 Mrs. Gay 
may also have contributed a portion of the purchase money out of 
her share of her father's estate. The amount stipulated to be paid, 
380 pounds lawful money, was probably sufficient to satisfy the 
creditors and to prevent them from prosecuting their Appeal. It 
was also doubtless more than any one else would have paid for the 
property under the then existing conditions. The amount paid 
down at the sale as earnest money, according to Mrs. Gay, was 
129 dollars. How large a proportion this was of the whole price, 
and how much the whole price amounted to, it is difficult to as- 
certain, as there were so many kinds of money in use at the time 
as to cause great confusion and uncertainty. 4 The balance was to 
be paid in six weeks. It was, at all events, paid before the execu- 
tion of the deed of conveyance, on the ninth of December following. 
Mr. Thomas Walley appears to have acted as auctioneer at the sale, 
and was also one of the witnesses to the deed. He, like Capt. Gay, 

1 Mrs. Gay is so styled by inadvertence, as her husband was still living. 

2 John Lowell, the Agent of the estate, was a Boston merchant and 
auctioneer, a member of the Committee of Correspondence and, in 1776, 
Deputy- Secretary of the Executive Council. He was cousin-german to his 
more distinguished namesake, Judge John Lowell (1743-1802), and died in 
Boston, 1 June, 1793, ce. 54 years. 

8 Suffolk Probate Files, No. 18,785. The estate was not settled until 1794. 
4 See Hassam's Confiscated Estates of Boston Loyalists in 2 Massachusetts 
Historical Society's Proceedings for May, 1895, x. 162-185. 



belonged to the West Church, and his name frequently occurs in 
its early records. According to Mrs. Gay, he sent an account of 
the sale, properly authenticated, to her husband at Halifax. 

The conveyance to Timothy Atkins is recorded with Suffolk 
Deeds, Lib. 161, Fol. 240. It recites that Richard Cranch, Samuel 
Henshaw, and Samuel Barrett, a Committee appointed to sell the 
Estates of Conspirators and Absentees in the County of Suffolk, 
had sold at public auction to Timothy Atkins of Boston . . . 
Brick-layer, for 380 pounds lawful money, a certain part of a cer- 
tain real estate, late the property of Martin Gay, an Absentee. 

The estate is described as consisting of a brick dwelling-house, 
shop, stable, and other Buildings in the Town of Boston, bounded 
Easterly on Union Street 44 feet, &c. (then follow the other bound- 
aries), all which is conveyed to said Timothy Atkins by warranty 
deed — 

" excepting and reserving, for the future disposal of the Common- 
wealth, all that part of said premises which was set off to Euth Gay, 
the wife of said Martin Gay, viz., the two middle tenements . . . 
[Here follows a description identical with that contained in the extract 
from the Probate Records cited above] as will more fully appear by 
reference to the Record in the Registry of Probate's Office for said 
County," i. e., in Suffolk Probate Files, No. 16,842. 

The deed was acknowledged 12 January, 1787, before "W m 
Wetmore, Jus. JPacis." 

Prior to this sale, during the years 1779 and 1780, Mrs. Gay 
paid rent " for part of the Mansion House " (». e., the part not set 
off to her as dower) to John Lowell, Agent of the Estate. The 
stable and the work-shop were also leased to other parties. 1 

Four years after the date of the conveyance to Timothy Atkins, 
i. e., 10 June, 1790, another transfer of the property took place. 2 

1 Beside the estate on Union Street, Martin Gay, at the time of his leav- 
ing Boston, owned a house and land on Winter Street. This was also leased 
by John Lowell, Agent, until sold to John Davis, of Boston, shopkeeper, for 
£225, "money." (Suffolk Deeds, cxxxvi. 228.) In this sale no right of dower 
was reserved. In the Inventory of the estate of Martin Gay, Absentee, 2 April, 
1770, the Mansion House, workshop, stable, and land belonging to the same 
were appraised at £9000. 0. 0, and the House and land in Winter Street at 
£600. 0. 0. (Suffolk Probate Files, No. 16,842.) 

2 Suffolk Deeds, clxviii. 122. 



The instrument by which the transfer was effected is styled an 
Indenture and Covenant between Atkins and Gore, by which 
Timothy Atkins of Boston, Bricklayer, — 

" in consideration of . . . five shillings . . . and for and in consideration of 
the love & affection he bears to Ruth Gay and Ebenezer Gay [her son] 
doth bargain, sell, &c, to Christopher Gore of the same Boston, Esquire, 
all that real estate in Union Street, Boston, which he purchased of Rich- 
ard Cranch, Samuel Barrett & Samuel Henshaw, a Committee, &c. 
[Then follow the boundaries as in the former deed] ... To have and 
to hold all the aforesaid premises [excepting all that part of the estate 
which was set off to Ruth Gay as Dower and which is subject to the 
future disposal of the Commonwealth] to the use and behoof of Ruth 
Gay, wife of Martin Gay . . . for and during the term of her natural 
life, and in case she shall survive her son, Ebenezer Gay, and be in full 
health at the death of her said son . . . then to the use and behoof of 
her, the said Ruth Gay, her heirs and assigns forever ; but in case said 
Ebenezer Gay, son of said Martin and Ruth, shall survive and overlive 
her, the said Ruth Gay, then from and after the determination of that 
estate, viz., the estate of said Ruth Gay, for and during the term of 
her natural life, — to the use and behoof of the said Ebenezer Gay, his 
heirs and assigns forever. 

Ebenezer Gay was the youngest son of Martin Gay and the 
only surviving child of his second wife. He graduated at Har- 
vard College in 1789, practised law, and was a member of the 
State Senate. At the date of the above mentioned instrument, 
he was about nineteen years of age. He became the father of 
Mr. Winckworth Allan Gay, the artist, the present owner of the 

Christopher Gore, one of the parties to the above Indenture, 
afterward (1809) became Governor of Massachusetts and held 
many other high offices in the State and Nation. He was at this 
time a young man of thirty-two (born in 1758), and was the son 
of John and Frances (Pinkney) Gore. Frances Pinkney, his 
mother, was daughter of John and Elizabeth (Gretian) Pinkney. 
They had another daughter, named Mary, born 7 March, 1729, 
who was very probably the first wife of Martin Gay. 1 If so, she 

1 See ante, p. 384 and note 1. There is, to be sure, a difference in spelling. 
Martin Gay's wife is called Mary Pinckney ; the daughter of John and Eliza- 
beth was Mary Pinkney. 


would have been between twenty-one and twenty-two years of age at 
the time of her marriage, 13 December, 1750. If the above conjec- 
ture is correct, young Gore was nephew by marriage to Martin Gay, 
and the transaction maybe said to have been "all in the family." 1 

The effect of this instrument was to assure to Mrs. Gay through 
Christopher Gore, her trustee, and in case of her death to her son, 
control of the two end portions of the estate, of which she already 
controlled the middle portion by virtue of her right of dower, but 
only for her own life. In order to secure this middle portion to 
her son in case of her death, it was necessary that she should 
obtain an absolute estate in it ; in other words, that she should 
acquire what is called the remainder, which was still vested in the 
Commonwealth. This was finally accomplished. Martin Gay 
himself, on his return from his long exile, having apparently 
resumed his rights of citizenship, petitioned the Massachusetts 
Legislature to grant to his wife Ruth the "remainder, after the 
death of said Ruth," in the estate in Union Street, Boston, in which 
she still held her right of dower, said " remainder " being then in 
the Commonwealth. The Petition was granted, and on the twenty- 
seventh of February, 180T, a Resolve was adopted by the General 
Court directing John Read and William Smith, Esqrs., to con- 
vey to Ruth Gay all the interest of the Commonwealth in the 
Union Street estate " for such sum of money as, under all the cir- 
cumstances of the case, may be thought just and reasonable." 2 

Accordingly, on the twenty-third of June, 1807, the above 
mentioned John Read and William Smith did, in consideration 
of $1,680, convey to Ruth Gay, her heirs and assigns, — 

" all that part of the estate which formerly belonged to the said Martin 
Gay . . . which was assigned and set off to the said Ruth Gay as her 
third part of said estate by the Judge of Probate for said County of 
Suffolk, on the second day of April, 1779," 

1 See Genealogies of the Payne and Gore Families, published by the Prince 
Society, 1875, and in the Proceedings of the Massachusetts Historical Society 
for January, 1875, xiii. 405-424. See also the will of John Pinckney in Suffolk 
Probate Files, No. 7219. For a further account of Christopher Gore, see 
Quincy's History of Harvard University (edition of 1860), ii. 430 ; Foote's An- 
nals of King's Chapel, ii. 47G-480 and notes; and 3 Massachusetts Historical 
Collections, iii. 191. 

2 Chap. 85 of the Resolves of 1807. 


consisting of the " two middle tenements," etc., so often mentioned. 
By this conveyance 2 Ruth Gay acquired an absolute estate in fee 
simple of that part of the Union Street property which had been 
originally set off to her as dower, and the other two thirds of this 
property being held by Christopher Gore in trust for her and her 
son Ebenezer, she had become virtual owner of the whole. 

On the sixteenth of November, 1809, — Martin Gay having 
died in the preceding February, — two deeds were executed : 2 
by the one, Ruth Gay, widow, now resident in Hingham, con- 
veys to James Davis, of Boston, brass-founder, all that part of 
the Union Street estate which had been originally set off to her 
as her dower, to wit, the often mentioned "two middle tene- 
ments," etc. , by the other, Ruth Gay, widow, and her son Eben- 
ezer Gay unite in conveying to the same James Davis the other 
two thirds of the Union Street property which had been bought 
in by Timothy Atkins at the sale 15 June, 1786, and afterward, 
10 June, 1790, conveyed to Christopher Gore in trust. 3 The con- 
sideration named in the first of these deeds of 1809 was six thou- 
sand dollars, in the second nine thousand dollars, together, fifteen 
thousand dollars, which may fairly be said to have been saved to 
the family by Mrs. Ruth Gay's shrewd management. 4 Her son, 
Ebenezer Gay, was now thirty-eight years of age, and married 
(in 1801) to Mary Allyne Otis, who, as his wife, releases her 
right of dower in the premises. Less than half of the purchase 
money was paid at the time by Mr. Davis. For the remainder 
he gave to Mrs. Ruth Gay a mortgage on the property, payable 
by instalments in ten years. The mortgage was discharged by 
Ebenezer Gay, 9 April, 1817, his mother having died 12 Sep- 
tember, 1810. 5 

1 Suffolk Deeds, ccxxii. 168. 

2 Ibid, ccxxx. 301. 

8 It seems not to have been thought necessary to make Christopher Gore a 
party to this conveyance, though the legal title to the estate conveyed would 
seem to have been at the time vested in him as Trustee. It was probably 
assumed that the purposes for which the trust was created had been accom- 
plished, — that it had executed itself. Its provisions are rehearsed in the deed 
to Davis. 

4 From this amount should be deducted the £380 lawful money paid by 
Timothy Atkins at the sale, 15 June, 1786, and the $1,680 paid by Mrs. Ruth 
Gay, 23 June, 1807. (Suffolk Deeds, ccxxii. 168.) 

• Suffolk Deeds, ccxxii. 302. 


The subsequent history of Martin Gay's estate on Union Street 
has been told by Mr. Samuel T. Snow, Treasurer of the Revere 
Copper Company, in a paper read by him at a Stockholders' meet- 
ing of that corporation 24 March, 1890, and afterward printed. 
Mr. Snow has been connected with the Revere Copper Com- 
pany for more than ' fifty-six years. He has kindly lent a cop}^ 
of his beautiful little book which is now offered for inspection. 1 
Mr. Snow relates that, in the year 1800, Mr. James Davis, the 
elder of that name, then twenty-two years of age, hired a shop 
on Union Street and started in business as a brass-founder. He 
had learned that trade from a Hessian, said to have been a deserter 
from the British Army, who had been in the employ of a Mr. 
Crocker, 2 a pewterer, to whom Mr. Davis had been bound as an 
apprentice at the age of fourteen. 

Martin Gay, on his return to Boston in 1792, resumed his busi- 
ness as a coppersmith at his old stand, and soon after entered into 
relations, either as employer or associate, with young Mr. Davis. 3 

" Mr. Gay subsequently proposed to Mr. Davis to sell him the busi- 
ness, and further to aid him with such pecuniary assistance as he might 
require in its prosecution. This proposition was finally accepted, but 
not without some considerable hesitation on the part of Mr. Davis, as 
he had no security to offer for the indebtedness involved. No security 
was required nor was any ever given, but the transaction was fully 
completed by a transfer, and by its ultimate payment without default." 4 

1 It is entitled Fifty Years with the Revere Copper Company. A paper 
read at the Stockholders' Meeting held on Monday, 24 March, 1890. By its 
Treasurer, S. T. Snow. Boston : Printed by request and for use of the 

2 The Boston Directory of 1796 records the name of Robert Crocker, brass 
founder, on Edwards' wharf, Back Street, whose house was also on Back Street. 

8 Mr. Snow thinks that it was through this association that Martin Gay 
acquired the designation of " Brass founder," sometimes applied to him. In 
all original documents examined, of early date, where his calling is mentioned, 
he is styled " Brazier " or " Coppersmith ; " in later documents, " gentleman." 

In the Act of the year 1778 (chap. 24), " to prevent the return to this State 
of certain persons therein named," etc., the name of Martin Gay is followed by 
the designation " Founder" (Province Laws, v. 913, 1004-1009.) Also, in the 
Inventory of the Estate of Martin Gay, Absentee, taken and appraised 2 April, 
1779, one of the items (besides the founder's mould already mentioned) is 
" Founder's pattin [?], £8. 15. 0." (Suffolk Probate Files, 16,842.) 

4 Fifty Years with the Revere Copper Company, p. 21. 

. ■- ■ 

, Gay's de 
I the estate i • 

his fou> 
limself his 

d finally 

Company was i 
members wer< 
alker Lincoln, ai 
formerly belong 
is a frontispiece 

pany — 

ied so much of the 
oteel by Mr. I 
trim for Bale, and 

^ose." 3 

aow says that tr 

himself from m 

is "the great eat 

be last letter of the 
in 1788, there is 

to whom ip is 
on of Philip Jan 

1754. He 
ttor there from 

Years with the Rei 
- The foregoing is tak< 



This transaction was certainly highly honorable to both parties, 
and shows moreover the kindly and generous nature of the re- 
turned fct Absentee." 

After Mr. Gay's death, in 1809, Mr. Davis, as we have seen, 
purchased the estate from his widow and his son Ebenezer, 

" and the property, as enlarged by several subsequent purchases, still 
[1890] remains in possession of his heirs. 1 . . . He occupied the entire 
premises with his foundry, shop, and residence for mauy years, asso- 
ciated with himself his son, Mr. James Davis, Jr., as a partner, January 
4, 1828, and finally merged the business into the Revere Copper 
Company." 2 

This Company was incorporated in June, 1828. The original 
Charter members were Joseph Warren Revere, James Davis, Fred- 
erick Walker Lincoln, and James Davis, Jr. They occupied the 
premises formerly belonging to Martin Gay until 1 June, 1843. 

There is a frontispiece to Mr. Snow's little volume, representing, 
as he says, the office of the Revere Copper Company in 1840, when 
that Company — 

4 'occupied so much of the building on Union Street as had previously 
been devoted by Mr. Davis to a shop, wherein were displayed the wares 
kept by him for sale, and still earlier had been used by Mr. Gay for the 
same purpose." 3 

Mr. Snow says that this frontispiece was etched from a drawing 
made by himself from memory. The passageway which is seen on 
the left is " the great entry way " mentioned in the deeds. 

Of the last letter of the series, written by Martin Gay from 
London, in 1788, there is not much to be said. Mr. E. James, of 
Cambridge, to whom it is addressed, was undoubtedly Eleazar 
James, son of Philip James of Hingham, where he was born 
6 August, 1754. He graduated at Harvard College in 1778, and 
was a tutor there from 1781 to 1789. There may be something of 

1 Fifty Years with the Revere Copper Company, p. 21. In a note Mr. Snow 
adds: " The foregoing is taken largely from Mr. Joseph T. Buckingham's Letter, 
No. XVII., in The Saturday Evening Gazette, of May 21, 1859. It is understood 
that the facts contained therein were obtained by him directly from Mr. Davis." 

2 Ibid. p. 22. 
8 Ibid. p. 13. 


irony in what the writer says of the great and happy consequences 
expected to follow from the ratification of the Federal Constitu- 
tion, and in his allusion to the " Tirony of Great Briton." There 
was at least one "Tirony" to which, Loyalist as he was, he never 
submitted, — the tyranny of the Spelling Book, under which we all 
now so servilely bend the neck. One cannot but sympathize with 
the longing of the exile to return, even as an alien, to the land of 
his birth, and though his banishment had been of his own choosing. 
Nor should we blame too severely the man who, in adhering to a 
losing cause, acted as many a man of conservative tendencies at 
the present day might have done had he been placed in the same 
circumstances. At all events, he never raised his hand against his 
native country. He was an " Absentee," but not a " Conspirator." 
Besides, it should be noted that, in leaving Boston for Halifax 
with the British troops, he was going to rejoin a considerable 
portion of his family, already settled in the Provinces, and that a 
part of his church with its pastor had preceded him thither. 

While residing in London, Martin Gay had a portrait of himself 
done in pastel, which is now in possession of his grandson W. Allan 
Gay. It represents him as a well-dressed gentleman of the period, 
with powdered hair, and a shrewd, yet kindly face, which does not 
belie what we know of his character. " He was the son of Dr. 
Gay of Hingham," says the Rev. Charles Lowell, his pastor at 
the time of his death, " and did not dishonor the name of his excel- 
lent father." » 

Martin Gay's will 2 is dated 7 August, 1807, and was proved 
13 February, 1809. He was buried in the Granary Burial Ground, 
in a tomb marked with his name, near the line of the projected 
new Congregational Building, which will front on Beacon Street. 

Mr. Andrew McFarland Davis then said : — 

The prolonged contest which was maintained in the eighteenth 
century, between the Royal Governors of this Province and the 
House of Representatives, is in some of its aspects fam